The Texas Stars went 0-1-1 last week, dropping two games to the American Hockey League’s hottest team. The Stars (35-22-9) are in third place in the Pacific Division based on points percentage, which will determine the final standings because teams do not play the same number of games. Texas has ten games remaining in the regular season, seven of them at home. In the ECHL, goaltender Philippe Desrosiers continues to put together a strong run. Here’s the latest on Dallas’ minor league affiliates.
Wednesday, March 16: Grand Rapids 4, Texas 1
Grand Rapids won its 12th straight game, defeating the Stars, 4-1, at Cedar Park Center. Goaltender Tom McCollum stopped 40 shots for the Griffins. Gemel Smith scored the lone goal for the Stars, and goaltender Maxime Lagace stopped 25 of 29 shots.
Saturday, March 19: Grand Rapids 6, Texas 5 (OT)
The Stars took a 5-3 lead into the third period but couldn’t hold it and lost 6-5 in overtime to Grand Rapids at Cedar Park Center. It was the 13th straight win for Grand Rapids, which scored two goals in ten seconds early in the third to erase the 5-3 Texas lead. Eric Tangradi then scored 42 seconds into overtime to give the Griffins the second point. Maxime Lagace stopped 42 shots for Texas. Julius Honka, Matt Mangene, Matej Stransky, Curtis McKenzie and Cole Ully scored for the Stars. Jason Dickinson had two assists.
*LW Curtis McKenzie has registered 25 points (12 goals, 13 assists) in his past 21 games.
*C Jason Dickinson ranks seventh in rookie scoring with 47 points (20 goals, 27 assists) in 64 games.
*Julius Honka ranks seventh in defenseman scoring with 38 points (10 goals, 28 assists) in 63 games.
*RW Brendan Ranford ranks seventh in the league in scoring with 53 points (17 goal, 36 assists) in 66 games.
*Here’s where Texas ranks in some key statistical categories:
Goals for: 3.65 (2nd)
Goals against: 3.21 (25th)
Shots for: 33.1 (3rd)
Shots against: 32.3 (26th)
Power play: 20.3 (3rd)
Penalty kill: 80.1 (24th)
Here is the Texas lineup from the last game.
Derek Hulak – Justin Dowling – Brendan Ranford
Curtis McKenzie – Jason Dickinson – Matej Stransky
Cole Ully – Gemel Smith – Matt Mangene
Remi Elie – Derek Army – Branden Troock
Esa Lindell – Julius Honka
Mattias Backman – Jesse Blacker
Brennan Evans – Ludwig Bystrom
3/17: LW Kevin King released from PTO
Wednesday, March 23: Milwaukee at Texas, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, March 26: Milwaukee at Texas, 7:00 p.m.
Sunday, March 27: Texas at San Antonio, 4:00 p.m.
Idaho Steelheads update
The Idaho Steelheads, Dallas ECHL affiliate, went 1-0-1 over the past week. The Steelheads (35-21-8) are first in the West Division and third in the Western Conference.
Goaltender Philippe Desrosiers won his only start of the week, stopping 24 of 25 shots in a 4-1 victory over Rapid City. Desrosiers is 9-0-2 in his past eleven starts with a 1.81 goals-against average and .927 save percentage.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Hockey League or Dallas Stars Hockey Club. Mark Stepneski is an independent writer whose posts on DallasStars.com reflect his own opinions and do not represent official statements from the Dallas Stars. You can follow Mark on Twitter @StarsInsideEdge.