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Stars begin home-and-home set with Blues

by Deborah Francisco
BLUES (12-5-3) at STARS (11-8-1)

TV -- FS-Midwest (HD), FS-Southwest (HD)

Last 10 -- St. Louis 5-4-1; Dallas 5-4-1

Season Ssries -- This is the second game of four between the two Western Conference clubs this season and the first of a home-and-home set that will conclude in St. Louis on Saturday. The first meeting resulted in a 3-2 shootout victory for Dallas on Oct. 16.

Big story -- The Blues look to extend a three-game win streak with two contests against the Stars in as many days. Both teams won close contests on Wednesday night and will go into Friday’s contest hungry for two more points.

Team Scope:

Blues -- The streaky Blues won seven straight, then lost the next five, but have won their last three and look to tack on a fourth win on Friday in Dallas.

"We overhandled some pucks, we underhandled some pucks, and there was some play that they applied pressure in our own zone that we got ourselves running around a little bit," coach Davis Payne said. "In the end, we will take this as two points knowing that we snuck out of here with an extra one or two."

Netminder Jaroslav Halak’s 29 saves in the shootout win helped snap a four-game road losing streak for the Blues.
"On the road we had lost a few games with a high score, so we just need to keep it simple on the road," Halak said. "That was the type of game we were playing at the beginning of the season, so we just need to keep doing the same thing."

Stars -- Dallas bounced back from a bad 4-1 loss in Toronto on Monday with an inspiring 2-1 victory in Ottawa on Wednesday.

"We haven't won in a month on the road, and that's unacceptable for this team," forward Trevor Daley said. "We had sleds on our feet in Toronto, and tonight was a new night."

However, Dallas pulled itself together and looks to string together two in a row on Friday.

"We got some good goaltending, we took advantage of our scoring chances, and Brenden (Morrow) got a big goal for us in the third," forward Jamie Benn said. "It was a gritty win, and that's what we need on the road. You have to have hard-working wins on the road."

Who's hot -- Morrow has 4 points in as many games, including the game-winner in Wednesday’s victory in Ottawa. … McDonald has 10 points in his past seven games and played the hero for the Blues on Wednesday, tallying the first goal of the game as well as the game-winner in the fifth round of a shootout.

Injury report -- Dallas defenseman Mark Fistric is questionable for undisclosed reasons. … St. Louis defenseman Barret Jackman played Wednesday night after missing nine games with a sprained knee. Forward TJ Oshie is on injured reserve with a broken ankle.

Stat pack -- The Stars had been outscored by a 16-4 margin during their four-game road winless stretch while the Blues were outscored 26-10 during a four-game road skid that ended on Wednesday.

Puck drop -- Dallas has gone 5-0-1 in its last six at the American Airlines Center.
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