Last night, the Stars talked a lot in the room about getting too complacent in the second period, in which they yielded three goals to Rockford. Texas Coach Glen Gulutzan went to the video room with the team earlier today and was happy with the result, "They picked up a lot of their mistakes." Texas slowed down the game tonight and tried to minimize those mistakes that got them in trouble last night and had yet another positive result, this time in less dramatic fashion. "We kept it simple today," said goalie Richard Bachman. "Limit turnovers and mistakes."
The Stars had previous allowed a goal in the first 60 seconds of the past two games. Texas put up a clean sheet through the first minute and beyond in tonight's game. In fact, it was Texas that struck first with Brandon Segal tipping home a shot from Ondrej Roman with just 9.6 seconds left in the first. After being outshot 5-2 at one point, Texas closed the period with an 8-7 shots advantage.
Roman was again the benefactor of a tip in the second period, but this time it wasn't a Texas stick. On the power play, Roman threw a puck to the net from the right wing circle. The shot, which wasn't even on net initially, was tipped unintentionally by Rob Klinkhammer into the net. Roman has now scored five points in his last four games, over a quarter of his season total of 17. The Stars outshot the IceHogs 24-12 through two periods thanks in part to a plethora of power plays.
Rockford would attempt to even up the score by pelting Bachman with 12 shots in the third period. "You expect it," said Bachman. "The guys really handled it well, boxing out for me and letting me see the puck." The rookie netminder only allowed one goal in the game, a power play tally from Ryan Potulny that came while Texas was outmatched 6-on-4 thanks to a delayed penalty to Cody Chupp.
The weekend went just as well as Texas could have expected. They now depart on an 8 game road trip after collecting four points in their last two games at home. They have crawled out of their "6th place" spot, in terms of points, to 5th as well. While the Stars know that they rank better by points percentage, Coach Gulutzan said there is definitely something psychologically boosting about not seeing yourself in 6th place every night, even when you're winning.
Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Mouillierat, Blindenbacher (scratched)
Larsen, Morin, McCulloch (lower body)
Gagnon, Sawada, Vincour (callup)
Tonight's attendance was 5,588.
AHL Gamesheet - Texas v. Rockford - February 12 2011