Texas had a chance to clinch a playoff spot outright for the first time tonight but Peoria spoiled the party in the third period with two goals. The Stars took a second period lead on goals from Philip Larsen and Francis Wathier but ultimately came up short to the Rivermen's final frame push. The Stars will try again to lock up a playoff berth on Friday against Milwaukee.
The Rivermen started the scoring in the first period with a goal, predictably, from Nicolas Drazenovic, who always performs well against Texas. The rebound goal came at the midpoint of the first period. Texas's power play struck back before the end of the period with Philip Larsen tipping in a centering pass from Aaron Gagnon. Dan Spang had the second assist on the goal.
Another tip beat Jake Allen in the second. Francis Wathier redirected a shot from Jordie Benn to take the 2-1 lead six minutes into the second. However, Peoria poured it on in the third, outshooting Texas 12-4 and outscoring them 2-0. Nathan Oystrick's slapshot goal tied the game just a hair shy of halfway through the frame. With the game poised to go to overtime, Jake Gannon found the net for just the second time this season. Gannon scored from the right wing boards on a shot that found the net through traffic.
The Stars have another chance to seal up a playoff spot on Friday with their game at Milwaukee. The Admirals are currently without their top goaltender, Mark Dekanich, but that's a matter for Friday's gameday preview.
Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Ludwig (upper body)
McCulloch, Embach, Monast, Schultz (scratched)
Vincour, Segal, Lukowich (callup)
Scott Glennie stepped into the lineup for the first time tonight. He recorded only one item on his stat sheet, a minus-1 after being on the ice for Peoria's second goal. Glennie wears #15 for the Stars, formerly worn by Michael Neal.
Tonight's attendance was 2,668.
AHL Gamesheet - Texas at Peoria - April 6 2011