|Colton Sceviour (Credit: Christina Shapiro/Texas Stars)|
"I don't think I've ever been the leading goal scorer in a league before," said Sceviour.
News of his assignment to Texas was closely guarded until near gametime, releasing at 5:20 PM, in hopes of catching the Rampage off-guard.
"I did a full practice this morning [in Dallas]," said Sceviour, who has been in Dallas for the past three weeks. "I packed my stuff up and drove directly from Frisco to the rink. I haven't been home yet, so it's been a long day."
Coach Desjardins thinks the NHL time has done Sceviour well. He added honestly, "I do think his shot was a little better, but you don't get a better shot over a week."
Sceviour and his linemates did a lot of damage in the game, combining for three goals and six assists. Most of that work was done in the second period, as Texas put up four goals in the middle frame. The power play had three overall.
Travis Morin put more distance between himself and Sceviour in the league point scoring lead with a goal and two assists to stay in #1 overall in the league at 39. Sceviour has 33. Cristopher Nilstorp had 22 saves on 24 shots against him, starting back-to-back games after injury to Jack Campbell.
The win set a franchise record for home winning streak at seven. The crowd of 6,082 got into it, putting on a good show for the TV audience with cheers and jeers alike for the home team and referee crew, respectively.
Morin got it started early with a power play goal off the right point shot. It made it through everyone's legs right off the faceoff and found the back of the net for the 1-0 lead. Sceviour and Curtis McKenzie assisted.
San Antonio got it right back after the same Morin failed to clear a rolling puck. Jed Ortmeyer found Joey Crabb down low, and Crabb sent the puck into the net off the body of Steve Pinizzotto in the crease.
As the first period ended, it was another defensive breakdown leading to the go-ahead goal for the Rampage. Bobby Butler found himself all alone behind the Texas defense. Ryan Button had to hack him down and gave San Antonio a penalty shot. Butler scored on Nilstorp high stick-side for the 2-1 lead.
The second period saw a goal explosion from the Stars after an initial bit of sputtering. An early 5-on-3 that was nearly a full two minutes was lackluster.
"We struggled there and that can really zap the momentum," said Sceviour.
Desjardins added, "That was a big power play for us. We needed it, and we haven't been as good on our last couple 5-on-3s. We have to be careful about relying too much on our power play. We are right now. It's great they're going in."
The final five minutes of the period saw Texas score four goals on just six shots against Jacob Markstrom.
Brett Ritchie went first, putting home a rebound off a patient play by Chris Mueller. Markstrom committed to Ranford on the left post and left Ritchie unmarked. Three minutes later on the power play, Ranford got one of his own. Initially ruled no goal due to a kicking motion, the replay showed that Ranford successfully kicked the puck from skate to stick and in for a power play goal, Texas's second of the night.
Colton Sceviour stepped up for the Stars' fourth and fifth goals in rapid succession. At even strength, Sceviour put a shot on net that Markstrom initially had. It popped up over the goaltender's glove side and rolled into the net limply for the 4-2 Texas lead.
"It wasn't a great shot, but it managed to get in, which was huge. The key was traffic and guys at the net."
Sceviour went again on the power play with Michael Houser now in net for San Antonio just a minute later. In the slot, Sceviour collected a McKenzie pass for his twentieth of the year.
The Stars and Rampage got a bit chippy in the final period, putting up forty total minutes of penalties. That included three fights.
"When we have the lead, we have to be smart with it, and we can't be in the box. It happens both ways. Sometimes you get frustrated. If we're losing, I expect us to play hard. [The Rampage are] going to play hard, and you expect that from them."
Jacob Markstrom was back in net for the third period for San Antonio. Neither team scored in the period.
Texas now packs up and heads to Oklahoma City for New Year's Eve.
Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Montgomery, Sinkewich (scratch)
Nemeth, Glennie, Campbell, Petersen (injury)
Campbell is still sore from his knee injury and continues to be out. Toby Petersen is 'a little banged up' and is also out now.
Tonight's attendance was 6,082.
AHL Gamesheet - Texas v. San Antonio - December 28 2013