Texas Edges Manitoba 3-2 and Pushes Point Streak to Nine

The Texas Stars completed the sweep of the weekend set against the Manitoba Moose on Friday beating their northern rivals 3-2.

The Neil Graham era remains unblemished for the time being as the Stars picked up their second win for their new head coach and pushed their current point streak to nine games. They’ve also won eight of their last nine.

Forward Adam Mascherin, who scored the game winner, spoke confidently of his team after the game. “I mean, the expectations are to win every game there, regardless of who we play,” he said. “I think if we stick to the things we've been doing it will make us successful.”

Notably, the Stars have now pulled themselves out of the basement in the Central and momentarily sit just behind Manitoba in the standings. That’s good enough for sixth place with plenty of potential to move up in the coming weeks.

Much like Wednesday’s tilt, Friday’s contest featured balanced scoring from different lines. Jason Robertson opened the scoring on the rush nearly seventeen minutes into the first period. The goal gave the promising you winger six points in his last five games and pushed his personal point streak to five.

(credit: Texas Stars)

Michael Mersch pushed the lead to two just over three minutes left in the opening period. Mersch crashed the net hard and followed up on a rebound created by Emil Djuse. The goal came less than two minutes after Robertson’s opening tally.

Landon Bow had another strong night in net and finished with 31 saves on 33 shots. “[Bow] really settled us and made some big saves, and kept it at 0-0,” said Graham. “He allowed us to get on the board first, and that was huge for us.”

The Moose managed to break through on Bow in the second period when they set up a perfect back door play for Seth Griffin to cut the lead in half twelve minutes in.

Mascherin’s game winning wrister came just 45 seconds into the third period, restoring the two goal lead. “I had a little breakaway there, and I just kind of outwaited the goalie made him make a move first.”

The goal was much needed insurance as the Moose did threaten later in the frame with Kristian Vesalainen picking up a power play goal. “You know, they scored a goal late there to come close, but we stuck with it and ended up grinding out a win at the end.”

One player who has impressed and contributed heavily to this Stars turnaround is Anthony Louis. The do-it-all forward notched a primary helper on Robertson’s goal giving him seven points in nine games for the Stars.

“His offense speaks for itself when you have a guy that has that offensive upside and also throughout the other zones,” noted Graham. “It was a huge acquisition for our team; it kind of springboarded us into this current streak.”

The Stars are going to continue to need that type of production if they are going to clear their next hurdle, which, in my mind, is getting back to .500.

They’ll get another chance to keep stacking points tomorrow against the Tucson Roadrunners. “We know they're very good hockey club. They've been rolling of late, so it's a good benchmark. We're going to have to be at our best.”

The puck drops at 7 PM CST.

Tonight's lines:



Injuries, scratches, and notes:
Gleason, Nyberg, Cuglietta (scratch)
Kero (injury)

Tonight’s attendance was 4,825.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas v. Manitoba - December 13 2019