Friday, November 30, 2018

Landon Bow Strong in Return as Texas Defeats Milwaukee 4-1

(credit: Andy Nietupski/Texas Stars)
Another three games in three nights has come for the Texas Stars, and they got off to a positive start this time, knocking off the Milwaukee Admirals 4-1. The recently reassigned Landon Bow locked it down between the pipes with 23 saves on 24 shots.

Winger Adam Mascherin continued his recent scoring onslaught with two goals, giving him five in two games and pushing his total to eight on the season. Erik Condra and Joel L'Esperance also provided needed depth scoring with one goal each. Justin Dowling pitched in three helpers, while Travis Morin and Denis Gurianov each had two.

Make no mistake, Bow was the first star of the game. He seemed to be more confident, having recently spent a lengthy road trip with the Dallas Stars and getting spot duty against the high-octane Pittsburgh Penguins. Bow was sassy with his glove and kept rebounds to a bare minimum. The pucks he did deflect off his pads went well away from the slot and high danger areas.

Texas matched up their second ranked power play unit against Milwaukee's second ranked penalty kill with six minutes left in the first period and won. Condra's buried a slick cross-crease feed from Morin to open the scoring.

Both of Mascherin's goals came in the second period. Near the eight minute marker, Gurianov's offering on net went rolling away from the crease but was found by the crashing Mascherin to push the lead to two. Mascherin's second goal with two minutes left in the middle frame was a beauty that featured a sparkling toe drag after a nice find by Dowling.

L'Esperance effectively ended the game nine minutes into the third period when he whacked away at a loose puck, sending the swimming Troy Grosenick on about the fourth attempt for the Stars. Admirals forward Matt Donavan made the game more respectable with three minutes left in regulation with his power play goal, ending Bow's shutout bid.

The Stars continue their road trip tomorrow night against the Grand Rapids Griffins. The puck drops at 6:00 PM CST.

Tonight's lines:
Payne-Dowling-Gurianov
Morin-L'Esperance-Condra
Caamano-Pearce-Mascherin
Hargrove-Phelan-Markison

Heatherington-Hansson
Gleason-Hanna
Vala-Norrish

Bow

Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Nyberg, Laberge (scratch)

Tonight’s attendance was 4,005.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas at Milwaukee - November 30 2018

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars at Milwaukee Admirals

Texas Stars
8-8-1-1, 18 pts
#7 Central Division
atMilwaukee Admirals
13-6-3-0, 29 pts
#1 Central Division
November 30th at 7:00 PM
UW-Milwaukee Panther Arena, Milwaukee, WI
(credit: Milwaukee Admirals)
A second stretch of three games in three nights awaits the Texas Stars this weekend--this time in the Midwest. Friday's game is against the Central division-leading Milwaukee Admirals, now coached by former Stars assistant Karl Taylor.

The Admirals banked enough points in the first couple weeks of the season to withstand a recent stretch of .500 play and still maintain their tenuous hold on first place. One interesting statistic suggests that the Ads are due for a regression: 9 of their 13 wins have been by one goal, including a 4-3 OT victory over Texas on October 6. They are getting by with balanced scoring, as no singular player pops from the score sheet at the moment.

On the other hand, there is data that suggests the Ads are for real and have some real staying power. They are winning with an elite penalty kill, ranked second in the AHL, and rock solid goaltending from Troy Grosenick (.924 SP) and Tom McCollum (.900 SP). It's as strong of a tandem of tenders that you'll find in the AHL.

Speaking of which, the Stars are getting some help in that department. Landon Bow has be reassigned to Texas after a lengthy road trip with Dallas due to Ben Bishop's injury. Bow barely got any burn during the trip, only third period relief duty in a blowout loss to the Penguins, so he should be good to go for at least a couple starts over the weekend. After a tough weekend series against the San Antonio Rampage in which the Stars only secured two points, they will be looking for a better result, beginning with Milwaukee.

The puck drops at 7:00 PM CST.

Stars injury/call up report:
Gleason (questionable; undisclosed)
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Bayreuther, Hanley, Fedun, Hintz (call up)

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Goalie Landon Bow Returns to Texas Stars

(Credit: Texas Stars)
After a brief NHL stint, the Dallas Stars have assigned Landon Bow back to the Texas Stars this morning. Bow did appear in a single game, a relief performance, where he stopped 14/14 shots.

Here's the release:
Dallas Stars General Manager Jim Nill announced today that the club has reassigned goaltender Landon Bow to the Texas Stars, Dallas' top development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL).

Bow, 23, appeared in one game for Dallas, stopping all 14 shots faced in his NHL debut, a relief appearance spanning 31:08 at Pittsburgh on Nov. 21. He has also appeared in 12 AHL games with Texas this season, logging a 6-3-1 record, a 2.81 goals against average and a .896 save percentage.

The 6-foot-5, 210-pound native of St. Albert, Alberta was originally signed as an undrafted free agent on March 10, 2017.

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Mascherin's First Pro Hat Trick Headlines Heated 7-3 Win for Texas

After last night's game, Texas Stars head coach Derek Laxdal said that his team needed an effort from all twelve forwards and every facet of the lineup to get a victory. This afternoon in San Antonio, they got that with a hat trick from Adam Mascherin, Elgin Pearce and Brady Norrish's first goals of the season and multi-point nights for several other depth players. The final of 7-3 was a good salve for a tough overall weekend effort against the Rampage.

Mascherin's points this season have come in bunches, but tonight was the ultimate in bunching. The hat trick, with all three goals coming in the first period, was supplmented by an assist in the second for a four-point night for the rookie. Denis Gurianov also had a four-point night, albeit a quieter permutation thereof, with one goal and three assists. Shane Hanna, Nick Caamano and Robbie Payne both had a pair of assists.

The Stars power play continued to be hot this game with two PPGs in the first period. Mascherin's three goals were only broken up by Jordan Kyrou's early goal to tie things at one each. From there, it was all Texas. Mascherin's second and third were supported by Denis Gurianov's eighth of the season in the second period. Jordan Nolan made it a two-goal lead again until Elgin Pearce and Brady Norrish each scored their first, making it 6-2.

The 7-2 goal was a breaking point for the Rampage. Joel L'Esperance scored on a scrum in tight, and the marker broke Jordan Binnington, who lashed out at L'Esperance with a slash to the back of the left leg. He was ejected, and Ville Husso took over in net.

Binnington's slash of L'Esperance and the ensuing fight
The third period was mostly benign as Chris Butler had the only tally of the period for either side, a power play goal that made it 7-3 for the final.

Texas now has rest days until another 3-in-3, all on the road, in the midwest starting Friday.

Tonight's lines:
Morin-Dowling-Condra
Mascherin-Pearce-Caamano
Gurianov-L’Esperance-Payne
Hargrove-Phelan-Markison

Nyberg-Norrish
Heatherington-Hansson
Vala-Hanna

Point

Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch, Gleason (lower body)
Bayreuther, Hintz, Bow, Fedun, Hanley (callup)
Laberge (scratch)

Tonight’s attendance was 3,004.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas at San Antonio - November 25 2018

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars at San Antonio Rampage

Texas Stars
7-8-1-1, 16 pts
#7 Central Division
atSan Antonio Rampage
8-12-0-0, 16 pts
#8 Central Division
November 25th at 3:00 PM
AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX

When it rains, it pours. The Stars are below .500 and might be without one of their top defensemen for the final game of the 3-in-3. Ben Gleason could miss today with a lower body injury sustained last night.
(Credit: Taylor Sammarco/Texas Stars)
That brings it right back to the point made by Laxdal last night, "We need guys to step up and keep it simple until we get healthy and Dallas gets healthy."

Injuries up and down the lineup hurt, but they actually create opportunities. ECHL callups and bottom six guys need to step up. Not much else to say here on the third day against the same team, a stretch that Erik Condra called a playoff series.

Colton Point should get the start today.

Stars injury/call up report:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Gleason (lower body, questionable)
Bayreuther, Hanley, Fedun, Hintz, Bow (call up)

Saturday, November 24, 2018

San Antonio Takes Second Game of Weekend Set Against Texas, 4-3

(Credit: Taylor Sammarco/Texas Stars)
San Antonio came out strong following last night’s big win in the Alamo City, and while there was some back and forth, Texas never led in the contest and ultimately fell 4-3 at home to the Rampage.

“It can’t be six guys every night; it’s gotta be twelve,” said Coach Laxdal, pointing out the top-heavy nature of Texas’s recent scoring. “We’re a little thin in areas, and we’re taxing them. We need guys to step up and keep it simple until we get healthy and Dallas gets healthy.”

Laxdal also pointed to the lack of luck that Texas seems to be getting when mistakes are made. “We seem to make mistakes defensively and pay the price for it,” he said, as opposed to occasionally getting a big save from the goalie or a missed execution from the opposition.

The Stars were being outshot 6-0 to start the game. Adam Musil went first for the Rampage, a backhanded goal from the hashes after a paunchy rebound came out to him and Gurianov didn’t have the backcheck to pick it up. A Texas power play would even things up quickly thereafter. Erik Condra potted his sixth of the year right on the doorstep. It wouldn’t last long as San Antonio reclaimed their lead to close the first period. Nolan Stevens, aided by a power play that had only just ended, whipped one past Philippe Desrosiers, a goal he probably should have had, to close at 2-1 for the first.

The power play was kind to Texas again to start the second period. Justin Dowling was left entirely unmarked just above the hashes, and Joel L’Esperance found him alone for his second primary assist of the night.

Tyler Wotherspoon and Austin Poganski reclaimed and extended the Rampage lead within five minutes of the Dowling goal. Wotherspoon’s was a laser of a point shot to make it 3-2. Poganski collected a rebound on the power play for the 4-2 score, a backdoor play that Niklas Hansson should have picked up.

Texas would make it interesting late with Erik Condra’s second of the night, a power play goal rebounded past Ville Husso.

“The power play before that was sloppy,” said Laxdal. “I challenged the guys to have better execution. Guys defend so well that you have to get second chance opportunities.”

Condra was added to the top group tonight and rewarded that decision with the goal. He said of his lat goal, “You're down two goals, and it can go either way. We ended up getting one on the power play and it gives you some juice to tie it up.”

The Stars would pull Desrosiers with under two minutes remaining, but nothing would come of it. Texas attempts to collect some points on the weekend with the final contest of the 3-in-3 tomorrow in San Antonio at 3 PM. They may be without Ben Gleason in the contest as Laxdal noted he could be out with a lower body injury tomorrow.

Tonight's lines:
Morin-Dowling-Condra
Hargrove-Pearce-Caamano
Gurianov-L’Esperance-Mascherin
Laberge-Phelan-Markison

Nyberg-Hansson
Heatherington-Gleason
Vala-Hanna

Desrosiers

Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Bayreuther, Hintz, Bow, Fedun, Hanley (callup)
Payne, Norrish (scratch)

Tonight’s attendance was 5,601.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas v. San Antonio - November 24 2018

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars v. San Antonio Rampage

Texas Stars
7-7-1-1, 16 pts
#7 Central Division
v.San Antonio Rampage
7-12-0-0, 14 pts
#8 Central Division
November 24th at 7:00 PM
H-E-B Center at Cedar Park, Cedar Park, TX

The San Antonio Rampage continued their hot streak last night against Texas and have an opportunity to pull out of their last place doldrums with this weekend's series against a depleted Texas squad.
(Credit: Andy Nietupski/Texas Stars)
"A depleted Texas squad"

The adaptation to circumstances such as the above under less than ideal conditions is indeed the story of the AHL. With last night's defense in Dallas looking in many ways at times the way Texas's defense should have looked last night in terms of personnel, the Stars are going to have to find a way to get it done. Dallas has already used almost a team-record number of defensemen this season, 12, with Taylor Fedun making his Dallas debut last night (and scoring his first in victory green to boot).

Depending on how long Ben Bishop is out, this is put up or shut up time for Philippe Desrosiers. He's been bouncing between the ECHL and AHL for several years now and has never caught on with the Texas Stars. If he expects another contract stateside at the end of the season, this may be a do-or-die two week sequence with the two 3-in-3s back-to-back.

San Antonio is doing what desperate teams must, surging at a good time against a vulnerable opponent. On home ice, the Stars need to stop them in their tracks and set up the rubber game on Sunday to be a forgone conclusion of Texas victory.

The Central Division this year appears to be a murder's row of solid teams. You don't make the playoffs in November, but you can surely make it harder to get there with divisional losses.

Stars injury/call up report:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Bayreuther, Hanley, Fedun, Hintz, Bow (call up)

Friday, November 23, 2018

Justin Dowling Scores Lone Goal in 4-1 Texas Loss to Rampage

The depleted Texas Stars narrowly avoided a shutout and lost handily to the San Antonio Rampage 4-1 on Friday night. The game was never close, although Justin Dowling's marker late in the third period with the empty Texas net made it more respectable. Phillipe Desrosiers got the start in net in place of recently called-up Landon Bow and finished with 20 saves on 23 shots.

Rampage forward Ryan Olsen broke open the scoring with about seven minutes left in the opening frame during a delayed penalty call. San Antonio emptied their net and took their time to set up Olsen for the goal during 6-on-5 play.

Another forward got on the score sheet for the Rampage five minutes into the middle frame as Charlie Sampair snuck one past Desrosiers. It was the only real blemish in an otherwise solid night for Desrosiers. The Stars had a huge chance to get back in the game after a bevy of penalties was dished out to the Rampage, giving Texas nearly two minutes of 5-on-3. Jordan Binnington got the better of them and finished with 27 saves on 28 shots.

San Antonio winger Austin Poganski put the game away about halfway through the final period with his second goal of the season. Though Dowling's goal four minutes later gave Texas a late surge, they never truly threatened as the Rampage added an empty netter for good measure.

The Stars continue their mini series against the Rampage Saturday night in Cedar Park. The puck drops at 7:00 CST.

Tonight's lines:
Morin-Dowling-Condra
Caamano-L'Esperance-Gurianov
Hargrove-Phelan-Mascherin
Laberge-Payne-Markison

Heatherington-Gleason
Nyberg-Hansson
Hanna-Norrish

Desrosiers

Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Vala, Pearce (scratch)

Tonight’s attendance was 6,253.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas at San Antonio - November 23 2018

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars v. San Antonio Rampage

Texas Stars
7-6-1-1, 16 pts
#7 Central Division
atSan Antonio Rampage
6-12-0-0, 12 pts
#8 Central Division
November 23rd at 7:30 PM
AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX
(credit: Andy Nietupski/Texas Stars)
Note: Texas made a few shuffles yesterday ahead of this weekend's 3-in-3. Taylor Fedun was recalled to Dallas, and Ben Gleason was returned. Ondrej Vala and Elgin Pearce were recalled from Idaho.

The Stars organization as a whole has received few breaks when it comes to injuries this season--or many, depending on your preferred use of the word. A recent slew of call-ups to the parent club comes just before a three games in three days set against the San Antonio Rampage that will test the collective will of the Stars.

One bright spot in the morass of all the ailments has been the play of recently acquired blue liner Taylor Fedun, who was swapped up to Dallas for Ben Gleason yesterday. Since his trade from the Buffalo Sabres organization, he has logged heavy minutes in four games for the Stars while playing in all situations. Head coach Derek Laxdal spoke of him like he was mana from heaven.

"He’s come in here, and he’s fit right in. It’s tough to get traded early in a season like that. He got traded from a good team like Rochester. But he’s been a seasoned, true professional with everything, and he’s going to fit great on our back end. Once we get our D corps back it should be one of the best D corps in the American Hockey League."

The Stars will be forced to deal with some tough realities starting with Friday evening in San Antonio, including not having Fedun. Not only are some of their top players in Roope Hintz and Gavin Bayreuther absent for NHL duty, they are also going without their best option in the crease in Landon Bow while Ben Bishop gets healthy.

The Rampage are mired in a woeful start, but these two teams really aren't that far apart. Like Texas, San Antonio is 5-5-0-0 in their last ten games. They can begin to turn their season around with a successful series against the shorthanded Stars, and you have to think that's the message in the locker room heading into Friday's game.

The puck drops at 7:30 CST.

Stars injury/call up report:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Bayreuther, Hanley, Fedun, Hintz, Bow (call up)

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Landon Bow Gets NHL Recall with Ben Bishop Injured

(Credit: Andy Nietupski/Texas Stars)
With Ben Bishop leaving last night's game in New York in the second period, the Dallas Stars need another keeper before tomorrow's tilt in Pittsburgh. Thus, the recall came this afternoon for second-year man Landon Bow. This is Bow's second NHL recall overall. It leaves the Texas Stars with Colton Point and Philippe Desrosiers as they approach a three-in-three weekend where they will definitely have to use both goalies.

With Dallas playing three games in four nights themselves, the Bow recall also sets up a chance at a Landon Bow v. Mike McKenna game in the NHL on Friday.

Here's the release:
Dallas Stars General Manager Jim Nill announced today that the club has recalled goaltender Landon Bow from the Texas Stars, Dallas' top development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL).

Bow, 23, has appeared in 12 AHL games with Texas so far this season, logging a 6-3-1 record. The netminder holds a 2.81 goals against average and a .896 save percentage so far in 2018-19. Bow has amassed a 33-25-11 record with a 2.92 GAA, a .900 SV% and one shutout in 74 career AHL regular-season games.

The 6-foot-5, 210-pound native of St. Albert, Alberta was originally signed as an undrafted free agent on March 10, 2017.

In a related move, the Dallas Stars have placed center Devin Shore on Injured Reserve (lower body injury), retroactive to Nov. 12.

Monday, November 19, 2018

Colton Point, Tony Calderone Recalled to Texas for Open Week

(Credit: Taylor Sammarco/Texas Stars)
With no games until Friday, Colton Point and Tony Calderone have been recalled from Idaho to Texas for the open week of practice. The Stars will play an intense schedule over the next two weekends, their only two three-in-three stretches of the year with 5 of those games coming on the road.

Point got things going in Idaho with a 2-0-0-1 record, 2.32 GAA, and .918 SV%. Calderone had a lone assist in his six games in the ECHL.

Here's the release:
The Texas Stars, American Hockey League affiliate of the NHL’s Dallas Stars, announced today that Dallas has reassigned goaltender Colton Point and forward Tony Calderone from the team’s ECHL affiliate, the Idaho Steelheads, to the Texas Stars.

Point, 20, saw action in five AHL games this year, totaling a 1-3-1 record, 3.96 GAA, and .854 SV%. The rookie made his AHL debut against the Milwaukee Admirals on Oct. 6 and took the game to a 4-3 decision in overtime. After being reassigned to Idaho, the North Bay, Ontario native played four games for the Steelheads earning a 2-0-0-1 record, 2.32 GAA, and .918 SV%.

Calderone, 24, is also skating in his rookie year and scored one goal in six games with the Stars to start the season. The 6-foot Trenton, Michigan native played six games for the Steelheads, earning an assist in those games. The University of Michigan alum recorded 92 points (54-38=92) in 134 NCAA games and a career best 45 points (25-20=45) as a senior before turning pro.

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Roope Hintz, Ben Gleason Provide Back Up for Dallas Road Trip

As Dallas starts their road trip today, they'll have some more reinforcements from Texas. Roope Hintz and Ben Gleason were both recalled yesterday for the journey to New York.

This is Hintz's first recall since being sent down after starting the season in the NHL. It's a good sign for his development to get the call again. Since the send down, he's been better than a point per game (4-7=11 in 9 GP) for Texas.

Ben Gleason, who started the season on a tryout to Traverse City, gets his second recall of the season as well. He's 2-6=8 in 13 GP with Texas this season.

Texas doesn't play again until their 3-in-3 this weekend, all against San Antonio.

Friday, November 16, 2018

Four Goals in Third Period Send Texas Stars to 5-1 Win Over Rockford

The Texas Stars rode a four goal third period to a 5-1 win over the Rockford IceHogs on Friday night. Recently acquired defenseman Taylor Fedun had the game winning goal early in the final frame to go with an assist. Roope Hintz also notched a two point game.

“I really like our game from start to finish,” said Stars head coach Derek Laxdal. “If you look at the second period, we probably had six or seven grade A chances. [Collin] Delia made some highlight reels. We just talked about keep on pounding pucks to the net and you’re gonna get rewarded. I thought we played one of our most complete games of the year.”
(credit: Andy Nietupski)
The Stars blistered Rockford goaltender Delia with rubber all night, outshooting their opponent 41-16. Though he didn’t see a ton of action, Stars goaltender Landon Bow had an important bounce back from a tough outing on Wednesday. “From Bow on down I thought our guys were solid.”

The urgency that Laxdal was preaching after Wednesday’s loss was there from the drop of the puck for the Stars. It primarily manifested when the Stars were down a man.

Dowling drew a huge penalty to even things up while the Stars were initially on the kill six minutes into the contest. During 4-on-4 play, Gurianov made a perfect read during his 2-on-1 rush, holding up just enough in the offensive zone to find a passing lane. Hintz was the benefactor, finishing the play for his tenth point in nine AHL games.

Confidence continued to surge in the latter half of the opening frame for the Stars, though it didn’t lead to any goals. After they went shorthanded once again, the Stars generated two sparkling chances that would’ve been goals if Delia hadn’t suited up for Rockford. “It’s tough to play in a game like that when a goalie is standing on his head, and you kind of get frustrated.”

Jordan Schroeder’s roofer from in close tied the game with one minute and fifteen seconds left in the second period. It had the potential to be a deflating goal considering the Stars had owned the entire frame, outshooting the opponent 15-4 due to a few power play chances. As is often the case, Delia was the best player for the IceHogs.

“We had so many good looks there in the first two periods,” said Fedun. “The message in the locker room was: stick with it, it’s going to come eventually. [Delia] made some really big saves.”

For the third period, Delia finally looked more man than machine when Fedun scored less than twenty seconds into the third period. The veteran defenseman, who has been logging big minutes in his first three games with the Stars, feathered a softy from the point that just crept by the heavily screened Rockford net-minder.

“Taylor Fedun does a great job getting pucks through,” said Laxdal. “Travis Morin had a great screen on the goal. Once we got that second goal, I thought we took a little pressure off ourselves.”

The IceHogs committed a bad boarding penalty to give the Stars their sixth power play of the game halfway through the period which led to a momentary fracas. Morin cleaned up a loose puck in front of Delia to give the Stars some breathing room and Hintz his second point.

“I think we just stuck with it,” said Fedun. “The quantity of shots that we were throwing on net, we knew that if we kept at it that a couple were going to go in for us.”

Fedun’s second point came on an offering from the point that was redirected in by Laberge to put the Stars up 4-1. Colton Hargrove topped off the four goal frame when he cleaned up his own rebound on the rush with less than five minutes of regulation.

Laxdal was complimentary of both players after the game: “[Fedun’s] a solid vet. I know him from Edmonton when I coached the Oil Kings and he was with the Oilers. That was a great pickup for our group. Once we get our D corps back it should be one of the best D corps in the American Hockey League. [Hargrove’s] done a great job. He’s got six goals for us while playing up and down the lineup. When we need someone to step up, he steps up.”

The Stars head south on I-35 to take on the San Antonio Rampage next Friday. The puck drops at 7:30 CST.

Tonight's lines:
Morin-Dowling-Condra
Caamano-Hintz-Gurianov
Hargrove-L’Esperance-Mascherin
Laberge-Phelan-Markison

Heatherington-Fedun
Hanna-Gleason
Nyberg-Hansson

Bow

Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Norrish, Payne (scratch)

Tonight’s attendance was 5,046.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas v. Rockford - November 16 2018

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars v. Rockford IceHogs

Texas Stars
6-6-1-1, 14 pts
#7 Central Division
v.Rockford IceHogs
8-5-1-2, 19 pts
#3 Central Division
November 16th at 7:00 PM
H-E-B Center at Cedar Park, Cedar Park, TX
(credit: Andy Nietupski)
Texas Stars head coach Derek Laxdal knows how he wants his team to play heading into Friday's game against the Rockford IceHogs. "We have to have the same urgency that we had in the last five minutes [of Wednesday's game] when we were pressing and were doing anything to tie the game up," he said. "We have to have that urgency right off the hop."

Those were his words after a loss to the Manitoba Moose on Wednesday. That type of urgency will be critical out of the gate on Friday against a Rockford team looking to climb the standings in the division. "Rockford lost [Wednesday] against Grand Rapids so they’re going to be hungry for a win."

The key to Rockford's success so far has been their stellar goalie tandem of Anton Forsberg and familiar foe Collin Delia. Both tenders are sporting save percentages above .930 in decent sample sizes. One key for the Stars is eliminating soft first period goals that have become a recent fly in the ointment. "That’s part of hockey, and that’s where guys are scoring goals now. They’re throwing pucks from everywhere. You have to be ready every time because you know that puck is going to get slung on net."

For new Stars captain Justin Dowling, the reason for their .500 play to start the year has been less about effort and more about mental lapses in the defensive zone. In preparation for the Rockford game, he said, "[We need to go] back and watch some video, see where our mistakes were and where we gave up some chances, where they were able to capitalize on it. It’s not a compete thing, it’s not an effort thing. It’s more Xs and Os right now. We’ve got to get back to the drawing board."

The puck drops at 7:00 PM CST.

Stars injury/call up report:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Hanley, Bayreuther (call-up)

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Rough Second Period Sinks Texas in 5-4 Loss to Moose

The Texas Stars got their first look at the Manitoba Moose on Wednesday night in a 5-4 loss. Balanced scoring was a bright spot for the Stars as Roope Hintz, Joel L’Esperance, James Phelan, and Colton Hargrove all scored a goal, but a poor second period in which they allowed three at even strength was their undoing.

“Overall, in sixty minutes I thought we did things that we try to do as a team,” said Stars head coach Derek Laxdal. “I thought we had a couple of good looks, but when we had a couple breakdowns defensively in the second period, they stung us.”
(credit: Andy Nietupski)
In his first postgame interview as the newly-minted Stars captain, veteran center Justin Dowling was quick to shoulder blame with his line registering a minus four in scoring differential.

“I think it was won and lost on my line,” said Dowling. “If we had a better game and were better defensively. It seemed like every time we gave something up to them they were scoring on it. We gotta be better than that.”

The opening frame saw the Stars get off to a rough start when Moose winger Seth Griffith crashed the net to dislodge a loose puck from beneath Landon Bow six and a half minutes into the contest. It was a bad goal for Bow to allow considering he had position and was waiting for the whistle that never came.

The first period goal was an area of concern for Laxdal. “That’s two games in a row when we’ve given up a bad goal on the first shot of the game. That’s something that we have to address with our goaltender. He’s gotta be focused on it and ready to go.”

The Stars responded by outshooting the Moose the rest of the period and getting the tying goal on their second power play chance. Hintz’s goal came on a deflection from Dowling giving Hintz his ninth point in eight games. Not to be overlooked was the impressive offensive zone keep by L’Esperance as he batted the puck down out of the air on a clearing attempt. If he let it go, it surely would’ve resulted in the Moose going back to even strength.

L’Esperance put another stamp on the game less than two minutes into the second period when he netted his seventh goal of the year. He finished short side high on Eric Comrie after a nifty drop pass from Adam Mascherin.

Dowling was encouraged by the play of some of the younger players. “I love the fact that when the older guys aren’t going there’s still some depth in that locker room that’s gonna get the job done. We weren’t at our best, but [the young players were] there to pick us up and we still had a chance at the end.”

Moose forward Logan Shaw had been hunting a goal since he caught the post in the first period after a putrid Stars turnover. Eventually the scoring came in spades for 2011 Florida Panthers draft pick. He cashed in on one nearly halfway through the game to tie the score at two after he streaked across the blue paint and scooted his first goal past Bow. It was the first instance of a tough stretch of play by Bow in which he allowed three goals in the frame on only a handful of shots.

“That’s a hard forechecking team,” said Laxdal of Manitoba. “They’re physical. I think they play to their strengths. They’re not overly offensive but they create goals by turnovers and pressure.”

The Stars countered Shaw’s first goal on the very next shift as the fourth line got on their horse and rushed the offensive zone, setting up Phelan for his point blank marker. The momentum was short-lived, however. Less than two minutes later, the Moose won an offensive zone draw and Kristian Vesalainen roofed one cleanly past Bow to knot the game up again. Shaw nabbed his second point of the game with his primary helper.

Topping off his three point night, Shaw then one timed a sweet feed from behind the net via JC Lipon, giving him his second goal four minutes later.

Moose winger Skyler McKenzie sealed the deal a few minutes later with an easy finish off of a tic tac toe set-up. Hargrove’s 6-on-5 goal with just over three minutes left in the contest made the Moose sweat. Dowling was complimentary of the DFW native: “[Hargrove’s] been hot.”

The Stars had the building buzzing for the final two minutes with their net empty once again and occupied the offensive zone for a few golden chances. Comrie had just enough in the tank to eke out the win.

“It’s a pretty exciting five minutes when you pull the goalie with five minutes, you’re down two and you get one with about three minutes left,” said Laxdal. “We had about two or three outstanding looks to tie the game up. Give Comrie some credit for making some big saves at a big time in the game.”

The Stars will be back at it against the Rockford IceHogs on Friday evening at 7:00 PM CST.

Tonight's lines:
Morin-Dowling-Condra
Hargrove-Hintz-Gurianov
Markison-L’Esperance-Mascherin
Laberge-Phelan-Caamano

Heatherington-Fedun
Gleason-Bayreuther
Nyberg-Norrish

Bow

Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Hanna, Payne, Hansson (scratch)

Tonight’s attendance was 3,715.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas v. Manitoba - November 14 2018

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars v. Manitoba Moose

Texas Stars
6-5-1-1, 14 pts
#5 Central Division
v.Manitoba Moose
7-7-0-0, 14 pts
#6 Central Division
November 14th at 7:00 PM
H-E-B Center at Cedar Park, Cedar Park, TX
(credit: Andy Nietupski)
The Manitoba Moose head into Cedar Park on Wednesday to take on the Texas Stars for the first time this season, having just experienced a 5-0 trouncing at the hands of the San Antonio Rampage on Tuesday. These Moose aren't quite the same team that took the AHL by storm last season en route to an abbreviated postseason run in which they were swept by the Rockford IceHogs in the second round.

They do still employ point per game winger Mason Appleton, though. They also have the luxury of icing 2017-18 Eddie Shore Award winning defenseman Sami Niku, though he will be unavailable against the Stars due to a call-up. The Moose goaltending situation appears to be in flux with Eric Comrie garnering most of the starts at a respectable .913 save percentage.

The Stars did receive some recent reprieve in the midst of their successful four point parlay over San Antonio, receiving Denis Gurianov and Dillon Heatherington back into the fold. Defenseman Ben Gleason was also sent down from the Dallas Stars on Tuesday. Although another call-up is expected with Devin Shore going down in Dallas, the Texas Stars should be able to ice their heavy hitters on Wednesday. We will keep an eye on it regardless.

The puck drops at 7:00 PM CST.

Stars injury/call up report:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Gleason, Hanley (call-up)

Note: Elgin Pearce was assigned to the Idaho Steelheads yesterday.

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Texas Stars Shuffle on D as Gleason Returns, Vala Heads to Idaho

Ben Gleason (Credit: Texas Stars)
Just two roster notes today as things become a bit more settled on the system-wide defense. With Roman Polak back to health and no Dallas games until Friday, Dallas has returned Ben Gleason to the Texas Stars. He played in two games while in Dallas and picked up his first NHL point in his first NHL game on Saturday.

Ondrej Vala was sent back to Idaho yesterday in anticipation of the move. If Dallas still needs someone on Friday, all signs indicate Gavin Bayreuther would be the most likely callup. In the meantime, Texas has a game tomorrow against Manitoba at home.

Here's the Gleason release:
Dallas Stars General Manager Jim Nill announced today that the club has reassigned defenseman Ben Gleason to the Texas Stars, Dallas' top development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL).

Gleason, 20, recorded one assist (0-1=1) in two NHL contests with Dallas. Gleason has registered six points (2-4=6) in 11 AHL games this season with Texas. He is tied for first among Texas defensemen in both goals (2) and points (6).

The 6-foot-1, 185-pound native of Ortonville, Michigan was originally undrafted and signed with Dallas as a free agent on Sept. 13, 2018. Gleason has recorded 125 points (22-103=125) in 236 career regular-season OHL games with the Hamilton Bulldogs and London Knights.

Here's the Vala release:
The Texas Stars, American Hockey League affiliate of the NHL’s Dallas Stars, announced today that defenseman Ondrej Vala has been reassigned by Dallas to the club’s ECHL affiliate, the Idaho Steelheads.

Vala, 20, began the season with the Steelheads after skating in a pair of preseason games with the Stars. The blue liner earned his first ECHL point, an assist, two penalty minutes and a plus two rating in six games of action. Vala has played two games with the Stars this season and recorded two shots. The Czech Republic native made his AHL Debut two seasons ago, tallying an assist in three games with Texas.

The WHL product played 191 games in junior hockey from 2015 to 2018 and recorded 74 points (21-53=74) with Kamloops and Everett.

Sunday, November 11, 2018

Stars Finish Four-Point Weekend with 4-2 Win in San Antonio

The Stars got it done in the first period on Saturday night and in the third period today to complete a four-point weekend over the San Antonio Rampage. Trailing 2-1 heading into the final frame, Texas scored three times, including twice on the power play, to vault past the home side.

Denis Gurianov, who was just returned from Dallas, continued his hot streak unabated. He tallied a goal and an assist in the contest. Taylor Fedun, playing in his first game as a Texas Star, marked off a second assist on the Stars' first goal of the night. Brady Norrish acquitted himself nicely in last night's game and earned the call over Ondrej Vala and Niklas Hansson, who were both scratched today. Norrish earned his first AHL assist on Travis Morin's first goal of the season.

Colton Hargrove had the Stars' only first period tally, and Roope Hintz collected the ultimate game-winning goal in the third period.

Landon Bow had a lighter night, stopping 19 of 21 shots against for his fifth win of the season. The Stars will play at home again on Wednesday against Manitoba.

Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Gleason, Hanley (callup)
Pearce, Vala, Hansson (scratch)

Taylor Fedun played his first game as a Texas Stars, wearing #28.

Today’s attendance was 5,195.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas at San Antonio - November 11 2018

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars at San Antonio Rampage

Texas Stars
5-5-1-1, 12 pts
#7 Central Division
atSan Antonio Rampage
3-11-0-0, 6 pts
#8 Central Division
November 11th at 3:00 PM
AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX

Last night's win put Texas back at .500, but a competitive division race means that they are still in 7th for the moment. Another matchup against the ailing Rampage could help to remedy that.

(Credit: Texas Stars)
The big news since last night is the return of Denis Gurianov and Dillon Heatherington to the Texas roster from Dallas. Gurianov collected his first NHL goal yesterday afternoon against Nashville. In addition, Taylor Fedun should be available for the contest. In just a few days, Texas went from big trouble on defense to having Bayreuther, Heatherington and now Fedun all in the lineup as veteran options. Goes to show how quickly things can change in the AHL.

Obviously the Stars aren't going to replicate an 8-1 win (but they wouldn't mind if they did). San Antonio, on their home ice, will have a push back.

Michael Mersch missed last night's game and was in a walking boot postgame.

Stars injury/call up report:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Hanley (call up)

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Texas Stars Crush Rampage 8-1 with Balanced Attack

Erik Condra scores again (Credit: Taylor Sammarco/Texas Stars)
If you start strong, you’re going to have a much easier night. Texas took to that playbook in a ig way this evening with a four-goal opening frame en route to an 8-1 final over the visiting San Antonio Rampage. Erik Condra netted a hat trick, and Justin Dowling had a four-point night in the win.

“We had a good week of practice,” said Coach Laxdal. “We had a tough last couple weeks, and it was good to see our guys respond and implement the things we worked on.

Before the game, the Stars were hurting for defensemen with the recall of Ben Gleason to Dallas being the third of their blue liners to head up I-35. The return of Gavin Bayreuther was a welcome sight for the club, and he made his presence known on the evening, generating a goal and an assist, both with his cannon of a shot from the blue line. He joked before the game to his teammates that he was the vet on defense, despite only being in his second season.

“I was hurt, but you learn a lot watching,” he noted. “It was awesome to come out today and have that punch right away. It was a great feeling and got my confidence up early on.”

Landon Bow might have had a cushion, but he still came up with some stellar saves in the contest. He had one of the best save sequences of the game in the second period as Jordan Nolan broke in alone shorthanded. Bow stoned Nolan on the initial shot and his rebound to keep the score at 5-1 at the time. He finished with 30 saves on 31 shots.

Bayreuther’s aforementioned cannon got things started in the first period. Just 51 seconds in, Erik Condra tipped his shot for the 1-0 score. Colton Hargrove went next, the beneficiary of a lifted stick sending the puck unexpectedly away from the control of Joel L’Esperance.

In short order late in the frame, the Stars made their 6th-ranked power play sing with a pair of tallies. L’Esperance lifted one over Ville Husso first, off the assist of Roope Hintz and Justin Dowling. Then, Bayreuther got one of his own from the point. Ville Husso’s night was done after the period, stopping 9 of 13.

“We have a pretty experienced group, two [power play] units we can put out there,” said Laxdal. “Having Dowling back settles our group down. It gives us three centers down the middle. It’s nice to have parts to continue to plug and play.”

The Rampage got one back to start the second period on a slick play. Cross ice and through traffic, Jordan Nolan found Jakub Jerabek sneaking down from the point. The defenseman hit the corner for the 4-1 mark. Justin Dowling would not let that stand long, tipping John Nyberg’s casual shot past Binnington.

In a game that was already 5-1, it’s hard to believe that you could say things got more out of hand in the third period, but indeed they did. Erik Condra potted two more to complete a hat trick, and it was clear the wheels had completely come off the bus when Colin Markison wrapped around for the 8-1 marker. Binnington seemed resigned to his fate that it would be a goal almost before Markison collected the rebound to head around the net.

Condra, who last netted a hat trick in Syracuse in February 2017, noted that the veterans were key to the victory in terms of doing the little things right. “It started with us. We weren’t playing the right way. No one is going to do the right thing if the leaders aren’t doing that. It’s about us leading them to do the right thing.”

The veteran line of Morin, Dowling and Condra combined for nine points on the evening, so the right thing paid off this evening.

Texas hits the road, literally, tomorrow to play the Rampage in San Antonio with a matinee start time of 3 PM.

Tonight's lines:
Morin-Dowling-Condra
Markison-Hintz-Caamano
Mascherin-L’Esperance-Hargrove
Laberge-Phelan-Payne

Nyberg-Bayreuther
Norrish-Hanna
Vala-Hansson

Bow

Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Mersch (lower body)
Gleason, Gurianov, Heatherington, Hanley (callup)
Pearce, Fedun (scratch)

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

AHL Gamesheet - Texas v. San Antonio - November 10 2018

Texas Stars Shuffle Defense With Trade, Signing and Recall

Ben Gleason
(Credit: Texas Stars)
Three big moves for Texas today. First, the Dallas Stars made a trade, acquiring Taylor Fedun from Buffalo in exchange for a conditional draft pick. Fedun was immediately assigned to the Texas Stars. He's a veteran of 346 games played in the AHL, including some time in Oklahoma City from 2011-14.

Ben Gleason got his first NHL recall as Dallas had Roman Polak under the weather. Polak ultimately could not play, and Gleason is making his NHL debut this afternoon against Nashville.

Finally, to backfill Gleason, the Stars signed D Brady Norrish from ECHL Idaho.

With two new defensemen on the roster with no time to practice, it should be an interesting night regardless. It will be very interesting to see the power play units that Texas rolls out. With Heatherington, Hanley and Gleason in Dallas, someone is going to get a tryout on the point.

Here is the Fedun release:
Dallas Stars General Manager Jim Nill announced today that the club has acquired defenseman Taylor Fedun from the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for a conditional seventh-round selection in the 2020 NHL Draft. Following the trade, Dallas has assigned Fedun to the Texas Stars.

Fedun, 30, has recorded five assists (0-5=5) in nine games this season with the Rochester Americans (AHL). Among Rochester defensemen, he ranks third in assists (5) and fourth in points (5). Last season in seven regular-season NHL games with Buffalo, Fedun recorded one assist (0-1=1).

The blueliner has appeared in 46 regular-season NHL contests over five seasons with Edmonton, San Jose, Vancouver and Buffalo, registering 15 points (2-13=15). Fedun has amassed 176 points (40-136=176) in 346 AHL regular-season contests and posted eight points (4-4=8) in 31 Calder Cup Playoff contests.

The 6-foot, 200-pound native of Edmonton, Alberta was originally undrafted and signed as a free agent by Buffalo on July 1, 2016.

Here is the Gleason/Norrish release:
Dallas Stars General Manager Jim Nill announced today that the club has recalled defenseman Ben Gleason from the Texas Stars. Gleason is now the fifth Texas player to be recalled by Dallas and joins Dillon Heatherington, Denis Gurianov, and Joel Hanley on the roster.

In an additional transaction, Texas has signed defenseman Brady Norrish from the team’s ECHL affiliate, the Idaho Steelheads.

Gleason, 20, is tied for fifth among all Texas Stars players and leads Texas defensemen with six points (2-4=6) in 11 AHL games so far in his first professional campaign. Gleason also leads club defensemen and shares fifth among all Texas skaters with two goals this season.

The 6-foot-1, 185-pound native of Ortonville, Mich. was originally undrafted and signed with Dallas as a free agent on Sept. 13, 2018. Gleason has recorded 125 points (22-103=125) in 236 career regular-season OHL games with the Hamilton Bulldogs and London Knights.

Norrish, 25, has played 13 games for the Steelheads as a rookie. The blue liner has earned 11 points (4-7=11) and is tied for second in scoring on the roster. Norrish is second among all ECHL defensemen in scoring and sixth among all rookie skaters in the league. The Strongfield, Saskatchewan native played four seasons at RIT before turning pro, earning 55 points (11-44=55) in 100 NCAA games.

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars v. San Antonio Rampage

Texas Stars
4-5-1-1, 10 pts
#7 Central Division
v.San Antonio Rampage
3-10-0-0, 6 pts
#8 Central Division
November 10th at 7:00 PM
H-E-B Center at Cedar Park, Cedar Park, TX

UPDATE: Big moves for Texas today. Taylor Fedun was acquired via trade and assigned to Texas while Ben Gleason was recalled to Dallas. Brady Norrish was signed to an AHL PTO and recalled from Idaho.

Somehow we made it more than ten games into the season without a game against the in-state rival San Antonio Rampage. Texas will remedy that tonight as they begin a two-game weekend set against the Alamo City club.

It has been a very unkind start to the season for the Rampage. They opened the season with a 4-0 win against the Griffins on home ice but didn't win again for three weeks, a stretch of eight games. With Ville Husso and Jordan Binnington in net, the issue hasn't been stopping goals. The Rampage rank 9th in the league in goals against at 2.85. Husso has regressed quite a bit in his second season, however, with a 1-7 record and a .890 SV%.

(Credit: Texas Stars)
However, San Antonio just can't score. They're 31st in the league and by a wide margin. Hershey is 30th at 2.29 goals per game and San Antonio is all the way down at a flat 2.0. Former Texas Star Brian Flynn leads the scoring with 1-7=8.

Texas won't complain about facing a club that isn't lighting the lamp. They are missing defensemen all over and just swapped Colton Point down to Idaho for Philippe Desrosiers with hopes of sparking stronger play from the net out. Unless Gavin Bayreuther is ready for tonight's game, Texas will need another defenseman just to get to six healthy D on the roster.

Stars injury/call up report:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury), Bayreuther (undisclosed)
Gurianov, Heatherington, Hanley (call up)

Friday, November 9, 2018

Hanley Recall Puts Texas Down to Five D Just When They Need Defense the Most

(Credit: Texas Stars)
It's not getting any easier in Cedar Park as the Texas Stars lost another veteran defenseman this afternoon. Joel Hanley was recalled to Dallas to backfill for John Klingberg, who was injured in last night's game with San Jose.

With Gavin Bayreuther on the mend, Reece Scarlett out for the season and Dillon Heatherington already in Dallas, Texas will need to make a recall to join some combination of the following five defensemen tomorrow night: Shane Hanna, Ben Gleason, John Nyberg, Niklas Hansson and Ondrej Vala.

Those five defensemen have a total of 139 games in the AHL between them. For contrast, Hanley has 270 on his own.

Texas has not been getting the performances they need in terms of overall defensive play, forwards or defensemen. Stability would be a much needed salve to their issues at the moment. However, another salve is playing a last-place team, which is exactly what they will be doing this weekend. The Rampage have won just 3 games this year and could be a confidence boost for Texas in their two game set Saturday and Sunday.

Here's the release:
Dallas Stars General Manager Jim Nill announced today that the club has recalled defenseman Joel Hanley from the Texas Stars, Dallas' top development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL). Hanley joins Dillon Heatherington and Denis Gurianov in Dallas and is the fourth Texas player recalled this season.

Hanley, 27, currently shares first among Texas defensemen with four assists and ranks second with five points (1-4=5) in 11 games so far this season. The defenseman also shares first among all Texas skaters with a +3 plus/minus rating in 2018-19.

The 5-foot-10, 190-pound native of Keswick, Ontario was originally undrafted and signed with Dallas as a free agent on July 1, 2018. Hanley has appeared in 22 career NHL regular-season contests with Montreal and Arizona, recording six assists (0-6=6) and four penalty minutes.

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Russian Winger Denis Gurianov Gets His Shot in Dallas After Big Rebound to Start Season

(Credit: Texas Stars)
With scoring depth dry as a bone in Dallas, the Stars's 2015 first rounder Denis Gurianov is on his way to the NHL for the second time in his career. Despite Texas being on a four-game losing skid, Gurianov is hot with 12 points in eleven games.

It's a really big turnaround story for Gurianov, who was healthy scratched multiple times in the Calder Cup Finals last spring. While Dallas is definitely in desperation mode for some scoring, I wouldn't take anything away from the work that Gurianov has put in to get himself into a position where he is the first option for recall.

In a corresponding move, Justin Dowling was reassigned to Texas. The center got into six games during his recall but only notched a single point, despite some time on the top line with Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn. He will be an instant difference maker for Texas as they seek to replace the offense lost with Gurianov in Dallas.

Here's the release:
Dallas Stars General Manager Jim Nill announced today that the club has recalled forward Denis Gurianov from the Texas Stars. Additionally, the club assigned forward Justin Dowling to Texas.

Gurianov, 21, leads Texas with 12 points (6-6=12) in 11 games this season, ranking first in goals (6) and sharing first in assists (6). He is tied for 13th among all AHL players in goals (6) and shares 15th in points (12). Gurianov made his NHL debut during the 2016-17 season, skating in one game for Dallas. The 6-foot-2, 195-pound native of Togliatti, Russia was selected by Dallas in the first round (12th overall) of the 2015 NHL Draft.

Dowling, 28, recorded one assist (0-1=1) in six NHL contests this season and has registered three assists (0-3=3) in 15 career NHL games. During the 2018-19 campaign with Texas, Dowling has six points (2-4=6) in seven contests. The 5-foot-10, 180-pound native of Cochrane, Alta. was originally undrafted and signed as a free agent by Dallas on March 26, 2014.

Monday, November 5, 2018

Following Rough Weekend, Texas Shakes Up Goalie Roster

(Credit: Andy Nietupski/Texas Stars)
Following last weekend's pointless California trip and the overall four game losing streak that Texas is on, the Stars announced a few roster moves today. Most notably, Texas swapped goaltenders with Idaho with hopes that fourth year man Philippe Desrosiers will spark the Texas defense to higher heights. Colton Point was assigned to Idaho in a reciprocal move.

The rookie Point has promise but has looked shaky in his starts. His lone win was a lucky one, as he found himself thanking his posts for at least four avoided goals against.

On the forward front, Tony Calderone was sent to Idaho and Elgin Pearce was recalled. Pearce has a pair of assists in five games with the Steelheads.

Here's the release:
The Texas Stars, American Hockey League affiliate of the NHL’s Dallas Stars, announced several roster moves today as the Dallas Stars have reassigned goaltender Philippe Desrosiers to Texas from the team’s ECHL affiliate, the Idaho Steelheads, and also assigned Colton Point and Tony Calderone to Idaho from Texas. In addition, Texas has recalled forward Elgin Pearce from the Steelheads.

Desrosiers, 23, is in his fourth season with the Stars organization and has logged 20 games across the past three seasons with Texas. The Saint-Hyacinthe, Quebec native has accrued a 9-7-0 record, 2.65 GAA, and .909 SV% with one shutout. Desrosiers has played in six games this year for the Steelheads, earning a 2-3-0-1 record, 2.76 GAA, and .910 SV%.

Pearce, 26, began the season in Texas and played one game with the Stars to start the year. The forward from Port Coquitlam, British Columbia has played 11 career games in the AHL across the last three seasons, netting a goal and adding two assists. With Idaho, Pearce has tallied a pair of assists in five contests.

Point has seen action in five games this year, totaling a 1-3-1 record, 3.96 GAA, and .854 SV% as a rookie in the AHL. Calderone is also skating in his rookie season and has scored one goal in six games with the Stars.

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Bakersfield Tops Texas as Stars Finish Roadtrip Without a Point

Texas's California roadtrip ended without a point to their name this evening as Bakersfield used a hot start to sink the Stars 4-3. Texas slips below .500 with the loss at 4-5-1-1.

Colton Point got the start for the Stars, who have been alternating keepers pretty consistently. The rookie was pierced twice in the first five minutes and looked to be getting the pull after the second tally against. Landon Bow came in for all of 16 seconds before Point retook the ice and finished the game. At the end of the match, Point sits with a season GAA of 4.00 and save percentage of .854. The standard for pro goalies is usually .900 or better, so it's safe to say Texas is expecting more of its tenders.

Those first two goals would set the Condors on a glide path for success. Joel Hanley scored his first of the season on the power play in the second period after Bako had already made it 3-0, and Erik Condra notched a goal late in the third to make it 4-2. Michael Mersch scored with one second left, but it was obviously too little too late to make a dent.

The Stars have a long layoff now until their next home game on Saturday in Cedar Park against San Antonio.

Tonight's lines:
Mersch-Hintz-Gurianov
Morin-L'Esperance-Hargrove
Condra-Calderone-Mascherin
Caamano-Payne-Markison

Hanley-Hanna
Vala-Hansson
Gleason-Nyberg

Point
Bow

Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Dowling, Heatherington (callup)
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Bayreuther (undisclosed)
Phelan, Laberge (scratch)

Tonight’s attendance was not available at press time.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas at Bakersfield - November 3 2018

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars at Bakersfield Condors

Texas Stars
4-4-1-1, 10 pts
#6 Central Division
atBakersfield Condors
3-4-0-0, 6 pts
#8 Pacific Division
November 3rd at 9:00 PM
Rabobank Arena, Bakersfield, CA

Thursday's matchup was supposed to be an easy win to right the ship for Texas. However, hot offense and a rough PK and goaltending effort left them pointless in Ontario. Bakersfield is similarly positioned as the Reign in the Pacific Division standings.

(Credit: Taylor Sammarco/Texas Stars)
The recall of Dillon Heatherington yesterday add insult to injury on the backend, literally. The Stars are averaging 3.7 goals against per game but only 3.3 for.

If you think the answer is to recall Philippe Desrosiers, that may not be the solve. Desrosiers is 2-3-1 in the ECHL this season and just let up four on 31 shots last night in Toledo.  He personally has a 2.52 GAA and .920 SV%, which admittedly beats anything going on in the AHL this season for Texas. However, the level of competition is the other question.

Texas is playing a Bakersfield team that scores a ton (4 goals/gm) but can't match those strong offensive nights with defensive performances to match. Of course, they have scored 8 goals in two different games (both against Stockton). Removing those two games from the total shifts it down to 12 goals in 5 games (2.4/gm) and gives a better picture of where they're at as a team.

One blast from the past to watch for tonight is Al Montoya. The Oilers picked up the vet tender last season in a trade with the Canadiens. He hasn't played against Texas since the four seasons he spent in San Antonio in the early 2010s.

Stars injury/call up report:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury)
Bayreuther (undisclosed)
Heatherington, Dowling (call up)

Friday, November 2, 2018

Dillon Heatherington Recall Adds to Veteran D Woes in Cedar Park

(Credit: Taylor Sammarco/Texas Stars)
When it rains, it pours. The Dallas Stars have recalled defenseman Dillon Heatherington to the NHL, leaving Texas in quite a lurch regarding their veteran defensive skaters. With Reece Scarlett out for the season and Gavin Bayreuther on the shelf temporarily, Heatherington's departure leaves just Joel Hanley as the only Texas defenseman not in his first or second year in the league.

That list of remaining defenseman is Hanley, Shane Hanna, Ben Gleason, Niklas Hansson, John Nyberg and Ondrej Vala.

More information is needed on Connor Carrick's health and the timetable for Stephen Johns's return before anything can be said definitively. However, if both continue to be out and the Texas Stars continue to struggle on goals against (3.7/gm, #20 in AHL), a more permanent solution may be needed that could involve getting another body in Cedar Park.

Unless Bayreuther is ready for tomorrow's game against Bakersfield, I would expect a recall from Idaho to get to seven defensemen.

Here's the release:
Dallas Stars General Manager Jim Nill announced today that the club has recalled defenseman Dillon Heatherington from the Texas Stars, Dallas' top development affiliate in the American Hockey League (AHL). Heatherington is the second Stars skater to earn a call-up to the NHL this season, joining Justin Dowling in Dallas.

Heatherington, 23, has appeared in ten games for Texas this season, recording four points (1-3=4) and six penalty minutes. He made his NHL debut with Dallas during the 2017-18 season, recording one assist (0-1=1) and 26 penalty minutes in six games played. With Texas last season, he posted 17 points (3-14=17) in 55 regular-season games played. In 21 Calder Cup Playoff contests, he added three assists (0-3=3) and 18 penalty minutes.
The 6-foot-4, 225-pound native of Calgary, Alberta was originally selected by Columbus in the second round (50th overall) of the 2013 NHL Draft. He was acquired by Dallas from Columbus in exchange for left wing Lauri Korpikoski on March 1, 2017.

Texas will return to action tomorrow night at 9 p.m. CT facing the Bakersfield Condors at Rabobank Arena, continuing the team’s weekend road trip through California.

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Texas Stars Can't Break Slump, Lose to Ontario Reign 5-3

The Texas Stars couldn’t get off the schneid on Thursday and dropped a third consecutive game, falling to the Ontario Reign 5-3. Ontario’s leading scorers Matt Luff and Matt Moulson came to play, tallying three and two points respectively. Rookie Sheldon Rempal found the net twice including the game winner.
(credit: Ontario Reign)
The Stars got the start they were looking for on the road with a goal from Adam Mascherin that came on the first shot for Texas. Mascherin finished the game with a helper to go with his tally.

The Reign quickly seized control for the next several shifts of the period with two successive goals coming in a span four minutes. Ontario’s top scorer Luff was left unmarked on the back door and made tied the game up with a one timer just over four minutes into the contest. Near the eight minute marker, Stars defenseman Dillon Heatherington was forced into an errant clearing attempt that centered the puck in front of Bow’s crease leading to a goal from Sheldon Rempal.

Atoning for the sloppy stretch of play, the Stars owned rest of the opening frame, answering with two more goals of their own. Gleason goal came on a sweet toe drag that got him into the slot to beat Petersen clean with a wrist shot with four minutes left of play in the period.

The aggressive play of the top line gave the Stars a power play before intermission. Colton Hargrove was obliged to capitalize on a slick feed from defenseman Joel Hanley to give the Stars a one goal lead heading into the locker room. The frantic pace of play favored the Stars, as they outshot the Reign 15-10.

Ontario’s second lead scorer Moulson got in on the action only thirteen seconds into the middle frame, pushing his point total to ten on the season. The Stars earned five power play chances to break the tie, but the score would hold through the end of the period. It wasn’t for lack of effort, as the Stars made Petersen stand on his head while they peppered him with eighteen shots.

Coming up blank with so much time on the man advantage would spell demise for the Stars. The Reign completely controlled play in the third period, outshooting the Stars 15-4. Joel L’Esperance took a tough penalty in the closing minutes which led to Rempal’s game winning goal on the power play. Luff’s second goal was scored into the empty net with seventeen seconds left of play.

The Stars will lick their wounds and finish their California trip on Saturday against the Bakersfield Condors. The puck drops at 9:00 PM CDT.

Tonight's lines:
Mersch-Hintz-Gurianov
Morin-L'Esperance-Mascherin
Caamano-Condra-Hargrove
Laberge-Markison-Phelan

Hanley-Nyberg
Heatherington-Hansson
Gleason-Hanna

Bow

Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury), Bayreuther (undisclosed)
Calderone, Payne, Vala (scratch)

Tonight’s attendance was unreported.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas at Ontario - November 1 2018

Gameday Preview: Texas Stars at Ontario Reign

Texas Stars
4-3-1-1, 10 pts
#4 Central Division
atOntario Reign
1-4-2-1, 5 pts
#7 Pacific Division
November 1st at 9:00 PM
Citizens Business Bank Arena, Ontario, CA
(credit: Ontario Reign)
After suffering their worst loss of the season last Saturday at home to the San Jose Barracuda, the Texas Stars need a palate cleanse. Sometimes, a road trip provides that opportunity due to the bonds that are inevitably forged within a team collectively pursuing an identity. The Stars hope that's the case as they head into southern California to take on the Ontario Reign on Thursday evening.

In their initial meeting of the year against their former rival from the Pacific Division, forward Michael Mersch will play his first game against his former team with whom he spent the first four plus years of his professional career going back to when the Reign were the Manchester Monarchs. The Stars have to be thrilled that Mersch is no longer wearing black and silver, as he is scoring at a point per game clip with his new team in Texas.

The Reign only have one win in eight games, a miserable start for any team. They have guys that put the puck in the net in spades with Matt Luff, Matt Moulson, and Brett Sutter all at nine points in eight or fewer games. Where they are really struggling this year is in net. Cal Petersen was somewhat of a revelation for the Reign during his rookie season last year, helping his team get to the playoffs before they lost in the first round to the Stars. This season, Petersen is allowing 4.78 goals per game in seven games. That's a recipe that doesn't lead to a lot of wins.

A game like this against a struggling opponent could be exactly what the Stars need to put their winless weekend behind them.

The puck drops at 9:00 PM CDT.

Stars injury/call up report:
Scarlett (season-ending ACL injury), Bayreuther (undisclosed)
Dowling (call up)