Texas Stars Earn Series Split With 6-3 Win Over San Jose

(Photo Credit: Ross Bonander/Texas Stars)

Cedar Park, TX -
A night after struggling through a 2-1 loss to the San Jose Barracuda Friday night, the Texas Stars bounced back and cruised to a 6-3 win in front of a sellout crowd of 6,778 at the H-E-B Center at Cedar Park Saturday. The sellout matched their single-season franchise high.

After a scoreless first period that saw the Stars outshoot the Barracuda 7-5, Texas took the lead 1:53 into the second when Mark Rassell five-holed Barracuda netminder Eetu Makiniemi giving the Stars the first advantage. Texas added to their scoring edge just 28 seconds later when Matej Blümel recovered a juicy rebound off a Gavin Bayreuther blast and buried it into the yawning net to make it 2-0 Texas early in the second.

Ozzy Weisblatt beat Matt Murray to cut the deficit to 2-1 at 7:28 to make things interesting, but Texas answered right back with a one-timer fed by Derrick Pouliot - part of a three-point night for the returning blueliner - with 6.1 seconds left in the middle frame to send the teams to the second intermission with the Stars leading 3-1.

In the third, Jack Becker marked his first multi-goal game in the AHL when he struck twice, 1:31 apart, at 10:25 and 12:26 into the third, giving the Stars a commanding lead at 5-1 late in the game.

The Barracuda attempted to mount a comeback as the game waned on. Nikolai Knyzhov netted one past Murray with 5:02 left. Then Scott Sabourin beat Murray and made it intriguing with 29 seconds left with a score of 5-3.

Fredrik Karlström sealed the victory with his league-leading sixth empty-netter with 17 seconds left, and the Stars polished off the much needed win.

Between the pipes, Murray stopped 27 of 30, earning the win that improved his record to 13-11-2-1. Makiniemi saw his record fall to 6-7-0-2 while giving up five goals after facing 29 shots.

With the win, Texas improved their record to 27-23-3-2 (59 pts.)  keeping them in third in the Central Division, two points ahead of the Rockford IceHogs and sixteen points behind the Milwaukee Admirals with seventeen games to play in the regular season.

Up next, Texas will take the day off on Sunday before prepping for the aforementioned IceHogs coming to town for a Tuesday-Wednesday matchup at the H-E-B Center at Cedar Park. Both games are scheduled for a 7:00 P.M. puck drop.

Tonight's Lines

J. Murray-Kyrou

M. Murray

Injuries, scratches and notes
Stankoven (callup)
Berard, Mastrodonato, Karow, Pettersen, Thomson (scratch)
White (undisclosed injury)
Reedy (out - upper body)

Tonight's attendance was 6,778, the tenth sellout of the season.

AHL Gamesheet - Texas v. San Jose - March 9 2024