Saturday, December 07, 2013

Seguin's burst fuels Stars' win over Flyers

Dallas, TX -- Tyler Seguin recorded a natural hat trick in the   second   period  and  finished   with  four  points,  as  Dallas  downed Philadelphia, 5-1, at American Airlines Center.

The  21-year-old's outburst marked his first goals since exploding for four in a  7-3  win at  Calgary on Nov.  14, and came  in his  second game back from a concussion.

Valeri  Nichushkin added  a goal  and  three assists  for the  Stars, who  had dropped five of seven coming in.

"I  felt Val played  awesome tonight. When he's competing and you see a little fire  in  him he’s  a different player  than when he’s  just going through the motions,"  Seguin said of  his linemate. "When you look at the first few games in this league and the last nine or 10, he’s definitely transitioned well."

Cody  Eakin contributed  a score, Alex Goligoski picked up two helpers and Dan Ellis  stopped  27 shots  as the hosts  ended a six-game  losing skid to their Saturday afternoon foes.

Andrej Meszaros provided the sole offense for the Flyers, who fell to 2-2-0 on their  current  six-game road  trip and played  without co-leading goal scorer Vincent Lecavalier for the third straight time.

Steve Mason allowed four goals for the first time since arriving in Philly and was pulled after making 22 stops in two periods. Ray Emery finished with seven saves in the final 20 minutes.

"Yea, we can play with these kinds types of teams," said Flyers captain Claude Giroux of his team coming off a 6-3 win in Detroit on Wednesday. "We just need to  focus more  and how we've got to  play for 60 minutes. If we would've done that we would’ve been fine."

Dallas  moved ahead  inside of three minutes left in the second, as Nichushkin fed  Seguin  for his  second straight  tally, a shot  through traffic from the slot.

The  hosts  went ahead  3-1 only 40  seconds later when  Seguin's try from the right-wing  boards appeared to  be tipped in front by Jamie Benn, but play was later  stopped and  the hat-trick  goal awarded  to the  shooter. On  the next shift,  Seguin  left a drop  pass while skating  up the middle, and Nichushkin
wristed his chance home to the far side for a three-goal spread.

"I'm  pretty happy, who  wouldn't be?" said Stars head coach Lindy Ruff of the deciding three-goal burst in 62 seconds. "It's always a relief and anytime you can kind of relax a little bit by getting some offensive support that's always a  positive.  The way  the guys  jammed them  home tonight  and really put the
pressure on, we stuck with it."

In the third, Philly let one chance with the advantage go by the wayside, then Eakin  converted  a 2-on-1 short-handed  chance with 4:33 remaining to account for the final score.

The  Stars  wasted a golden  opportunity to blow open  the game early, given a seven-minute  power play at the outset after Zac Rinaldo was kicked out of the game for jumping Antoine Roussel.

Dallas put five shots on Mason but he was equal to all of them.

"I don't know, ask him," was Flyers head coach Craig Berube's claim when asked what  was behind the surprise attack. "Obviously he went out there and punched him in the head a few times. It was stupid."

After  killing  off a subsequent minor,  the Flyers picked up the game's first goal with 1:09 left in the opening period. Wayne Simmonds carried up the right wing  and put  the puck  on net  while avoiding  a diving  defender. The  disc settled at Ellis' right pad where Meszaros poked it home.

Seguin's  redirect of  a Benn  pass  at the  right  post evened  the score  39 seconds into the middle period, but Mason made stops on Ray Whitney, Eakin and Roussel in succession through the midpoint to keep it an even score.

Notes: Seguin's  feat  was the first  natural hat trick  for the franchise since Mike Ribeiro  turned the  trick on Jan. 21,  2009 against Florida ... The Stars won their  first  game over  the  Flyers  since  a  4-1 decision  in  Philadelphia on  Dec. 1,  2007, and  posted their  first home  win against  their opponents since  a 3-2  score on March 13,  2007 ... Philadelphia had won three straight in  Dallas, but  fell to  4-6-3 all-time  in Texas  ... Rinaldo  was given  27 penalty  minutes for  just four seconds of  ice time ... Fredrik Modin was the
last  player to  record three  straight  goals against  the Flyers,  in a  6-0 Lightning  win on  Jan.  28, 2006  ... Philly  forwards  Giroux,  Scott Hartnell  and  Jakub Voracek combined  for no  points and a collective minus-9 rating.
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