Dallas 4 - San Jose 3
Let the good times roll! The Stars continued their winning streak with a comeback 4-3 win in a shootout over the San Jose Sharks last night. The Stars are playing with a confidence that I haven't seen in years and they showed that again last night when they fell behind twice in the third period. They didn't give up when the game was on the line and were determined to take this to the extra period.
Kari Lehtonen allowed three goals but still had a game for the ages. He had one of the busiest games he's had in a long while, stopping 42 of 45 shots and it wasn't just the quantity of the shots that he faced, it was the quality. For the first two periods, nearly every shot that he faced (20 shots through 40 minutes) was a golden scoring chance for the Sharks. Joe Pavelski alone had four or five point blank to near point blank shots that Kari was able to turn aside. Turnovers from the defense continuously put him in bad positions and he continuously bailed out the team. He stepped up in the overtime and shootout by stopping all five shots in OT and all five SO attempts from the Sharks. He made enough incredible stops to fill an entire week's quota of highlights. He was the very well deserved number one star of the game.
The hero in this game wasn't the usual suspect. This time it was Tomas Vincour. Vincour scored the game tying goal in teh waning minutes of the third period and was the only guy that scored in the shootout. The goal in the third was a wild one. There was a five or six player pileup literally right around the crease of Antti Niemi and Vincour somehow found the puck in the mass of humanity and scored the goal the biggest goal of the game. He was then as cool as the other side of the pillow during his shootout attempt. He skated right down the ice, stared down Niemi and calmly fired the puck right by him.
Dallas started out this game pretty well until Ryan Garbutt was assessed a penalty 12 minutes into the first period. He went in for a forecheck and hit a player after the whistle blew for an icing call. THe only problem was that the whistle could barely be heard until official blew his whistle a second time, which was after Garbutt had already delivered a hit. He received a roughing call and the Sharks pretty much dominated the next 20 minutes of game time.
Dallas actually scored first as Michael Ryder continued his incredible season. Kari Lehtonen made a great pad save on Ryane Clowe and the puck found its way to Jake Dowell. Dowell made a nice pass over to a breaking Ryder, who sped past two defenders and slid the puck by Niemi. It all looked great for the Stars until the very last seconds of the second period when Torrey Mitchell took a pass and absolutely abused Alex Goligoski in a one-on-one situation. Kari Lehtonen attempted to poke check the puck but Mitchell was able to get the puck by him.
San Jose would score again in the opening minute of the third period as Patrick Marleau got a goal just 25 seconds into the period. Dallas would make two comebacks in the third as Jamie Benn would score to tie the game at 2-2. Benn had a fantastic game of his own as he was all over the ice. Steve Ott missed the game due to a back issue and Benn had to line up with Ryan Garbutt and Adam Burish. Benn was pretty much the entire line for the whole game. Pavelski finally scored a goal with four minutes left in the game before Vincour got the game tying goal with one minutes left.
The win got the Stars to 79 pts, tied with the Chicago Blackhawks, and gives the Stars a small cushion for the division lead.
more after the jump