The Texas Stars are headed to the Calder Cup Playoffs for the sixth time in the franchise’s seven-year history. The Stars wrapped up a playoff berth over the weekend and will play San Diego in the first round, but home-ice advantage is still up in the air. Meanwhile, the Idaho Steelheads are headed to the playoffs in the ECHL. They’ll play the Allen Americans in the first round of the Kelly Cup Playoffs. Here’s the latest on Dallas’ minor league affiliates.
Friday, April 8: San Jose 3, Texas 0
The Stars outshot San Jose 33-19, but Barracuda goaltender Aaron Dell stopped every shot he faced as the Stars fell, 3-0, at Cedar Park Center. It was the third time Texas was shut out this season and the second time in the past seven games. Maxime Lagace stopped 16 of 18 shots in goal for Texas.
Saturday, April 9: Texas 8, San Jose 5
The Stars rallied from a 5-2 deficit to beat San Jose, 8-5, and clinch a playoff spot Saturday before a sellout crowd of 6,836 at Cedar Park Center. The Stars scored six straight goals in an 18:10 span from late in the second period to late in the third to turn the three-goal deficit into a three goal lead. Justin Dowling registered four points (two goals, two assists). Jason Dickinson and Matej Stransky both scored two goals and Curtis McKenzie and Esa Lindell also tallied. Maxime Lagace got the start in goal and was pulled early in the second after allowing three goals on nine shots. Jack Campbell played the rest of the way, stopping 19 of 21 to get the win. Texas outshot San Jose 51-30. The eight goals were a season-high for Texas.
*The Stars are 39-25-10. They rank third in the Pacific Division.
*The Stars wrap up the regular season with two games this week.
*Center Justin Dowling has 17 points (2 goals, 15 assists) in 15 games since returning from injury.
*Defenseman Julius Honka has 8 points (2 goals, 6 assists) in his past 9 games. He ranks fourth among AHL defensemen in scoring with 44 points (11 goals, 33 assists) in 71 games.
*Center Jason Dickinson has 7 points (2 goals, 5 assists) in his past 8 games. He ranks sixth among AHL rookies in scoring with 52 points (22 goals, 30 assists) in 71 games.
*Forward Matej Stransky has scored 7 goals in the past six games, giving him 22 goals in 72 games for the season.
*Here’s where Texas ranks in some key statistical categories:
Goals for: 3.62 (2nd)
Goals against: 3.23 (26th)
Shots for: 32.9 (3rd)
Shots against: 32.2 (24th)
Power play: 20.9 (4th)
Penalty kill: 80.5 (25th)
Here is the Texas lineup from the last game.
Derek Hulak – Travis Morin – Brendan Ranford
Remi Elie – Justin Dowling – Greg Rallo
Curtis McKenzie – Jason Dickinson – Matej Stransky
Esa Lindell – Niklas Hansson
Mattias Backman – Julius Honka
Ludwig Bystrom – Jesse Blacker/Brennan Evans
4/9: LW Curtis McKenzie reassigned to Texas (AHL) from Dallas (NHL)
4/8: C Jason Dickinson reassigned to Texas (AHL) from Dallas (NHL)
4/7: C Jason Dickinson recalled to Dallas (NHL) from Texas (AHL)
4/6: LW Curtis McKenzie recalled to Dallas (NHL) from Texas (AHL)
Wednesday, April 13: San Antonio at Texas, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 16: Manitoba at Texas, 7:00 p.m.
Idaho Steelheads update
The Idaho Steelheads wrapped up regular season play last week by winning two of three games. The Steelheads finished fifth in the Western Conference with a 38-24-10 record and will play the fourth-place Allen Americans in the first round of the ECHL’s Kelly Cup Playoffs.
Forward Emil Molin was named the Steelheads MVP prior to the regular season’s final game. Molin registered 46 points (22 goals, 24 assists) in 54 games this season, his first in North America. He tied for the team lead in goals and ranked third in points.
Goaltender Philippe Desrosiers recorded his second shutout of the season, stopping 36 shots in a 2-0 victory over Rapid City last Tuesday. Desrosiers finished the season 15-7-6 with a 2.34 goals-against average and .913 save percentage.
Here’s the first round playoff schedule for Idaho.
Game 1 – Thursday, April 14th: Idaho at Allen 7:05 PM CT
Game 2 – Saturday, April 16th: Idaho at Allen 7:05 PM CT
Game 3 – Wednesday, April 20th: Allen at Idaho 8:10 PM CT
Game 4 – Friday, April 22nd: Allen at Idaho 8:10 PM CT
Game 5 – Saturday, April 23rd: Allen at Idaho 8:10 PM CT (If necessary)
Game 6 – Tuesday April 26th: Idaho at Allen 7:05 PM CT (If necessary)
Game 7 – Wednesday April 27th: Idaho at Allen 7:05 PM CT (If necessary)
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.