Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Texas Stars Grind Out Tight Game Against Marlies, 3-1

Brendan Ranford, Scott Glennie each with two assists against Toronto
(Credit: Christina Shapiro/Texas Stars)
The Texas Stars were proud to grind out a win against the Toronto Marlies tonight in front of a sellout crowd in Cedar Park. The high-powered offense of Texas took a back seat to a solid defensive and goaltending effort.

"It had a bit of a playoff atmosphere, having to protect a one goal lead," said coach Derek Laxdal. "They make you earn every inch on the ice. It was a good test to see if we could grind out a hockey game."

The last time these two clubs met was in the playoffs, and while the rosters have turned over some, the character of the Marlies was the same.

"Toronto is always big and mean," said Brendan Ranford, who had two assists. "Last time we played them, it was more aggressive of a series because it was the playoffs. They are still more aggressive. They played hard and well."

Coach Laxdal's more aggressive style matched up well with the Marlies throughout the game.

"He likes finishing the body more and letting the guy know you're there," added Ranford.

Similar to Game 7, Texas scored two goals within 90 seconds of each other. This time they were late in the first period. Greg Rallo potted a very nice tip-in goal off the pass from Scott Glennie from the far side of the net.

Ninety-two seconds later, Glennie cut off a pass out of the Marlies zone and sent Texas in on the attack. Glennie's pass to Ranford, led to a pass to Radek Faksa. The Czech broke into the zone on a partial breakaway and beat Gibson five hole cutting across the net right to left.

"Scott Glennie played his best game of the season," said Laxdal. "A lot of jump in his step."

The Stars worked together over the ensuing forty minute to protect that lead. There were a number of solid chances, but they never connected. Spencer Abbott scored his third of the season in the second period to cut the lead to one. From the left wing circle, he beat Rynnas to the far side with the goalie deep in his net.

Despite the goal, Rynnas had a very good game, stopping 25 of 26 shots, including a great chance in the final few minutes of the third.

"We really needed that win," said Rynnas. "We have given up too many goals in the last games. We played better in our zone so I'm really happy. Today I felt like I played a relaxed game. When you do that, things tend to go your way."

Texas drew two power plays in the final three minutes of the game, pretty much sealing the Marlies' fate. For good measure, the Stars scored an empty net power play goal off the stick of Brett Ritchie. It was the unselfish pass of Travis Morin that completed the play as they were breaking in 2-on-0 on an empty net.

The Stars will head to Charlotte to face the Checkers on Saturday and Monday.

Tonight's lines:
McKenzie-Morin-Ritchie
Ranford-Faksa-Glennie
Stransky-Peters-Henderson
Rallo-Smith-Hulak

Meech-Klingberg
Gaunce-Fortunus
Honka-Jokipakka

Rynnas

Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Dowling (injury)
Wrenn, Lagace (scratched)

Tonight's attendance was 6,863, a sellout.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas v. Toronto - November 5 2014

2 comments:

  1. Spencer Abbott would look great in a Texas uni. Imagine him and Morin on the same line with someone like McKenzie, they would be imposable to get out of the offensive zone their puck handling is so good. He (Abbott) is just a scalpel in a drawer of hammers in Totonto, being wasted. Might just be me but his body language wasn't great last night. To bad Texas can't work a trade for him. If we had him and our goaltending raised just north of .900 you could write the Stars into the finals, in ink.

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  2. Wednesday night sell out!!! What a difference a championship makes!

    ReplyDelete

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