Friday, January 3, 2014

Stars Cannot Muster Third Period Rally, Fall 4-3 in Charlotte

The Texas Stars' third period luck finally ran out. For the third night in a row, the Stars came into the final period needing to come from behind to win. Tonight they couldn't come away with the win, falling 4-3 to the Checkers in Charlotte.

Special teams were a big storyline in the game as Texas scored twice on the power play early but couldn't find the tying tally late on the man-advantage to take it to OT. Charlotte scored one shorthanded but also potted a power play goal of their own. Travis Morin had a three point night while Colton Sceviour set a career high for goals scored at 22 with one tally on the night. He also added an assist. Russ Sinkewich rounded out the Texas scoring with his first AHL goal.

Matthew Pistilli opened the scoring with his first goal of the season. Philippe Cornet had the wrap-around on Robinson, which he lost the handle on. It slid over the Pistilli who got enough on it to get the 1-0 lead.

Just five minutes later, the power play activated for Texas. Just assigned and less than 24 hours since playing against the Canadiens in Dallas, Colton Sceviour scored his career-best 22nd goal of the season. The goal came from the slot off a nice pass from Curtis McKenzie. Travis Morin picked up the second assist.

Less than a minute later, Texas was back on the power play again. Travis Morin was the one finding the net on the second man-advantage. Sceviour missed on the initial shot, but Morin finished the play to go up 2-1. Chris Mueller had the second assist. The goal pushed the Stars power play to 4/4 on the weekend at that point.

Defensive breakdowns in the second period put Texas in a hole. On the power play, a bad change gave the Checkers the puck heading in on a breakaway on Josh Robinson. Nicolas Blanchard finished off the play to tie the game at two all.

Special teams continued to dominate as the Checkers power play got into the game. Matthew Pistilli scored his second of the season and the night just under the halfway point of the game. Texas got caught with all of their penalty killers on the opposite side of the ice, giving Pistilli a clean chance on Robinson.

The Stars found themselves down heading into the third period for the third straight game. Needing at least one, the Stars got themselves further into trouble as Beau Schmitz scored his second of the year with Robinson screened out in front by Chris Terry.

Relative newcomer Russ Sinkewich got into the action, scoring his first AHL goal just a few minutes later. Sinkewich's goal came from the point and chipped the paint on the left post on its way in. Morin and McKenzie got the assists.

A late power play for the Stars came up empty when it was needed the most and Texas couldn't find the net with the extra attacker either to fall 4-3.

The Stars get a week off now to prepare for their weekend games against Abbotsford and Utica on Friday and Saturday of next week, respectively.

Tonight's lines:
McKenzie-Morin-Sceviour
Ranford-Mueller-Stransky
Hedden-Dowling-Ritchie
Wathier-Peters-Vause

Labrie-Fortunus
Wrenn-Oleksiak
Button-Sinkewich

Robinson

Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Gaunce (callup)
Jokipakka, Montgomery (scratch)
Nemeth, Glennie, Campbell, Petersen (injury)

Tonight's attendance was 6,698.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas at Charlotte - January 3 2014

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