The Texas Stars and Richard Bachman knew that they needed two points today. Highlight reel saves from Bachman and opportunistic offense from everyone else gave the Stars those two points in the franchise's first day game at home or away. With the win, Texas stays ahead of Chicago and Houston and continues to control their own destiny in the West Division.
The Stars and Wolves skated to a scoreless first period where the goaltenders shined brightly. Chicago led Texas in shots at the end of the period 9-8.
The second period opened up the scoring. With the Wolves on the power play, Aaron Gagnon took a shorthanded shot that went back the other way and led to the first goal for Jared Ross in the first minute of the period. With Texas again on the penalty kill, Nigel Dawes collected a rebound off Richard Bachman to score the Wolves' second PP goal of the night to make it 2-0.
Fabian Brunnstrom could not get a penalty shot to go in the middle of the period, but Texas would not leave the period empty handed. Offensive defenseman Dan Spang scored his first goal since December 8th to cut the lead to 2-1 for the Wolves with 88 seconds left. Assists on the goal went to Brunnstrom and Rallo.
I would love to hear the speech Coach Gulutzan gave during the second intermission because Texas came out positively on fire in the third period. Fabian Brunnstrom opened up the scoring, tying the game at 2 just over 100 seconds into the game. Assists came from Morin and Lukowich. Less than 50 seconds later, Colton Sceviour tipped a Maxime Fortunus point shot for a 3-2 lead just 2:32 into the third. Mathieu Tousignant picked up the second assist.
The Stars killed off a late Luke Gazdic slashing minor and continued to swarm to the puck, as they did all day. Fabian Brunnstrom collected his third point of the day with an empty netter to seal the deal. Maxime Fortunus picked up his second assist of the night.
It was a quality win for the Stars, who now have sole possession of 4th place in the West. They scored four unanswered goals to win the game and that's a character builder for the young team. They will now travel to nearby Rockford for Friday's game against the 8th place IceHogs.
Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Stephenson, Backman, Chupp (scratched)
Blindenbacher (upper body)
McCulloch, Krahn (lower body)
Larsen (call up)
Tonight's attendance was 11,626.
AHL Gamesheet - Texas at Chicago - January 12 2011