After a seven game point streak came crashing down last night in San Antonio, Texas sent home a sellout crowd unhappy after falling for a second consecutive night, this time to the Lake Erie Monsters. Aaron Gagnon, who had the Stars' lone goal, felt that it was a lack of execution that led to the loss. "We've got to find our hands, we've got to make plays," said the center. "We're paid to execute."
The Monsters came into the game sporting an 8 game road losing streak and broke that streak tonight with the win. Texas's Fabian Brunnstrom also broke his goal scoring streak at 4 games.
Texas came out in the first ready to roll, but the period still ended at a 0-0 tie. The Monsters and Stars traded early power plays but neither produced. Shots were mostly even at 9-7 for Lake Erie.
Ben Walter broke open the scoreless tie early in the second, scoring on a one-timer from the inside edge of the left wing circle. It was the only scoring action in the period. Shots were well in Lake Erie's favor in the second, however, going 10-4 that way.
The game broke open in the third. With Texas needing to hunker down and generate some offense, the Stars took back-to-back penalties, Fortunus for delay of game and Lukowich for interference, to setup a 71 second long 5-on-3. The Lukowich penalty was ill-advised, as the captain and the Lake Erie forward were half the width of the ice from the puck and below the goal line, certainly not a scoring area.
Lake Erie seized the golden opportunity, scoring a power play goal during the two man
advantage. Patrick Rissmiller's 8th of the year would turn out to be the game winner. The Stars allowed one more on a turnover in the defensive zone, giving Ryan Stoa his third point of the night (1-2-3).
With under 3 minutes left in the game, Texas managed a goal off the stick of Aaron Gagnon, but it was too late. The Stars tried feverishly to finish off attempts at the net with the 6-on-5 advantage, but a night of turnovers and missed passes could not be overcome.
Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Monast, Chupp (scratched)
Blindenbacher (upper body)
McCulloch, Krahn (lower body)
Larsen (call up)
Texas recalled defenseman Guillaume Monast from Idaho before the game.
Tonight's attendance was 6,863.
AHL Gamesheet - Texas v. Lake Erie - January 8 2011