Stars rally to beat Sharks 5-4 in shootout

Dallas Stars

Credit: WFAA

Stars rally to beat Sharks 5-4 in shootout

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by JOSH DUBOW

Associated Press

Posted on April 7, 2013 at 7:05 PM

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) — Jamie Benn scored the lone goal in the shootout and Kari Lehtonen stopped all three attempts as the Dallas Stars snapped the San Jose Sharks' seven-game winning streak with a 5-4, come-from-behind victory on Sunday.

Alex Chiasson started the rally from a two-goal deficit in the third period when he scored his second goal of the game, and Loui Erickson tied it for the Stars, who have won two straight following a three-game losing streak. Eric Nystrom also scored, and Lehtonen made 32 saves through overtime for Dallas.

The Stars also erased a 2-0 deficit before falling behind 4-2.

Tommy Wingels, Brent Burns, TJ Galiardi and Marc-Edouard Vlasic scored for the Sharks, who had won the first six games of their seven-game homestand. San Jose failed in its attempt to become the first NHL team to win every game on a homestand of at least seven games, according to STATS LLC. Antti Niemi made 30 saves.

Benn beat Niemi in the second round of the shootout when he skated out wide and then came back to the middle for a forehand shot. Lehtonen sealed the win when he stopped Burns on the final attempt.

This was the first of three meetings between the teams in a span of 17 days, and the clubs look far different than they did for the first meeting of the season in February in Dallas.

The Stars have traded key players Brenden Morrow, Jaromir Jagr, Derek Roy and Michael Ryder since winning 3-1 then. That loss was the ninth in 10 games for the Sharks, who have turned things around dramatically of late.

San Jose won in Anaheim on March 25 and then took the first six games of this homestand to vault from outside the playoff picture to the middle of the fight for home-ice advantage in the first round.

The Stars twice erased two-goal deficits with Nystrom and Chiasson scoring 26 seconds apart in the second period to tie the game at 2. Chiasson and Erickson scored in the opening half of the third period to tie it at 4. The tying goal game when Erickson beat Brad Stuart to the rebound of a shot by Matt Fraser midway through the third.

Galiardi, whose improved play has helped spark this recent run, had helped San Jose take the lead with a beautiful spin-o-rama goal in the second off a good play from newly acquired Raffi Torres.

Torres has long been reviled in San Jose for playoff hits that hurt Milan Michalek and Joe Thornton over the years. He was even greeted by a mix of boos and cheers in his first game with the Sharks. But Torres quickly won over his new fans by dishing out some hard hits, drawing a penalty and earning two assists, including one on Galiardi's goal.

Torres hit Nystrom to jar the puck loose in the offensive end and then stole it from Trevor Daley before feeding Galiardi in the circle. Galiardi then spun and fired a backhand with his back to the net, and the puck sailed just under the crossbar to beat Lehtonen. Galiardi even seemed surprised by the highlight-reel goal, holding his arms out in celebration.

There was little celebrating after San Jose's next goal as it came after a lengthy video review determined that Vlasic's wraparound trickled off Lehtonen and just over the goal line to make it 4-2.

The rare afternoon game in San Jose got off to a chippy start with Joe Pavelski hitting Fiddler with a high stick early, and a scrum near Lehtonen midway through the period.

The Sharks struck first when Logan Couture beat Aaron Rome in a battle for the puck behind the Dallas net. Couture centered the puck, and Patrick Marleau whiffed on the shot attempt. But Wingels was right behind Marleau in the slot and knocked a shot in for his fourth goal.

NOTES: Stars F Lane MacDermid, who scored in his first two games since being acquired in the Jagr trade, sat out with an upper body injury. ... D Jason Demers returned for the Sharks in place of Matt Tennyson after missing four games with a head injury.

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