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Stars extend Ducks' road drought with 5-3 win

by Steve Hunt
DALLAS---The Anaheim Ducks – looking to avoid their 12th loss in a row away from home – managed to erase a three-goal deficit at Dallas on Monday.

It wasn't enough. The streak, not to mention coach Bruce Boudreau's rocky start, continue.

The Dallas Stars got goals from five different players – including a third-period game-winner from Michael Ryder to break a 3-3 tie – in a hard-fought 5-3 win over the Anaheim Ducks at American Airlines Center. Brenden Morrow had a goal and an assist and Loui Eriksson two assists for Dallas (19-12-1, 39 points).

Ryder's goal, his 11th of the season, came 6:42 into the final period when he beat Anaheim goaltender Jonas Hiller top shelf on the glove side from the low slot for the eventual game winner. Eriksson delivered a brilliant assist, feeding Ryder from near the right post.

"I thought they kind of took it to us in the last 10 [minutes of the second period]," Dallas coach Glen Gulutzan said "But our message between the second and third was we can't do it with a strike of lightning. We have to make sure every line's going out there and working and then we've got to do it together. The guys did that for that last 20."

Stars rookie goaltender Richard Bachman stopped 25 of the 28 shots he faced for his fourth career victory.

"I thought he was good. I thought his rebound control was real good and I thought he smothered a lot of things that came his way," Gulutzan said of Bachman. "Anything that was there, he did a pretty good job with."

With tonight's loss, the Ducks (9-19-5, 23 points) are now 0-9-3 in their last 12 road games and haven't won on the road since Oct. 27 at Minnesota. Dallas is now 10-4-1 at home. Hiller stopped 28 of the 33 shots he faced to drop to 8-14-5. Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau said Dallas capitalized at every opportunity.


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"There's no margin of error because if we make a mistake, it's in the back of our net right now," Boudreau said. "I think the first chance they had to score in the first period, they scored. And the first chance they had in the third period, they scored."

Dallas struck first when Morrow beat Hiller on the blocker side with a wrister at 9:06 of the opening period, capping a 2-on-1 opportunity with Mike Ribeiro. The Stars nearly made it 2-0 at 14:54 when Vernon Fiddler fed Eric Nystrom in front of the Ducks net, but Hiller came up with a huge stop to keep the score at 1-0.

In the second, a deep slap shot by Dallas defenseman Alex Goligoski during a 5-on-3 at 1:19 made it 2-0.  Just 24 seconds later, a slap shot by Ribeiro on the same power play from the left face-off circle gave the Stars a three-goal edge.

Anaheim responded at 4:30 of the second when Teemu Selanne beat Bachman short side with a wrister for his 11th goal of the year with the Ducks on the power play. Selanne also assisted on Visnovsky's goal in the second  to move to 21st on the all-time points list with 1,375, one ahead of former Dallas captain Mike Modano.

Before Selanne's goal, Dallas had killed off 16 straight opposing power plays.

Eriksson had a breakaway on Hiller at 13:58 of the second but Dallas' All-Star winger was well-saved to keep it at 3-1.

That stop proved crucial because less than a minute later, Lubomir Visnovsky made it a two-goal game when he scored from the very high slot past a shielded Bachman at 14:49. Ten minutes after Anaheim broke Dallas' kill streak, it tallied again on the man advantage.

The comeback was complete with just 1:33 remaining in the period. The Ducks tied it when Nick Bonino redirected a blast from Cam Fowler for his second career goal -- Fowler's second assist of the night.

After Ryder's strike, Nystrom's 11th goal of the year at 14:19 gave Dallas a two-goal edge. After Fiddler dug the puck out of the left corner he fed Nystrom, who beat Hiller short side to make it 5-3. With the goal, Nystrom matched his previous career high – the winger had 11 for Dallas last year and the same tally in 2009-10 with Calgary.

"I think we were a little slow out of the gates, but we stuck with it, got the lead and during a game, momentum changes back and forth and they managed to tie the game," Ryder said. "But I think we came back in the third, had a great third and came out with the two points, which is huge.

One huge positive for Dallas in the win was that their power play, a unit that was converting just 14.6 percent of their opportunities heading into tonight's game, was 2-for-5 against the Ducks.

"It was real good. We had shots and net presence," Gulutzan said. "We were putting pucks toward the net and you get bounces when you do that."

Anaheim continues their four-game road trip on Thursday night in Los Angeles while Dallas resumes a three-game homestand Wednesday against Philadelphia.
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