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McKenzie notches hat trick as Stars top Blues, 5-2, in Traverse City

by Mark Stepneski / Dallas Stars

Curtis McKenzie scored three goals and Valeri Nichushkin and Radek Faksa scored one each as the Dallas Stars opened the 2013 NHL Prospect Tournament with a 5-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues at Centre Ice Arena in Traverse City, Michigan Thursday night.

“It was a really good showing for the team,” said McKenzie, a sixth round pick in 2009. “It was the first time we got to play together as a whole group. It was a really strong performance by us.”

Jack Campbell, Dallas’ first round pick in 2010, got the start in goal for the Stars and stopped 21 of 23 shots.

“The kids played hard,” said Stars GM Jim Nill. “This is very competitive hockey. The intensity level is very high and I thought our kids played hard. They all played the way they should play. They won the game and it was good.”

The game was scoreless through almost the first 13 minutes, but the Stars struck for two goals in 56 seconds to take a 2-0 lead.

McKenzie opened the scoring with 7:07 left in the first, banging home a Brendan Ranford shot to break the scoreless tie.

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