- Associated Press - Sunday, January 24, 2016

DALLAS (AP) - For three years in a row now, the Colorado Avalanche have dominated Dallas.

At least on the scoreboard.

Carl Soderberg and Gabriel Landeskog each scored a short-handed goal, and the Avalanche beat the Stars 3-1 Saturday night for their fourth consecutive victory.

Semyon Varlamov made 42 saves for the Avalanche, outshot 43-15. Mikhail Grigorenko added Colorado’s final goal with 5:51 remaining.

The Avalanche beat Dallas for the 11th time in 12 meetings during Lindy Ruff’s three seasons as Stars coach.

“Those are things that you can’t really explain,” Landeskog said. “They’re one of the best teams in the league this year and they’re playing really well. It’s just a matter of trying to get ourselves in a good spot.”

The Stars totaled 106 shots, but the Avalanche blocked 32 and Dallas misfired on 31 others.

“I thought our penalty killing was really good, and we scored two short-handed goals. That gave us a chance to win this game, and (Varlamov) was phenomenal out there,” Colorado coach Patrick Roy said.

Jason Demers scored for the Stars, who fell to 2-6-2 in their last 10 games. Antti Niemi stopped 12 shots.

“To force them out of their game, you have to get the lead,” Ruff said. “We didn’t force them out of their game. We had to be a little harder around the front of the net.”

Landeskog’s goal at 10:12 of the second period broke a 1-all tie. Tyson Barrie pushed the puck ahead to Landeskog, who skated in alone and put a wrist shot past Niemi.

Colorado’s penalty killers are 19 for 21 in the last seven games, with three short-handed goals.

“I realized I was on my own,” Landeskog said. “I kind of had my mind made up already what I was doing coming in on him. It doesn’t happen very often that you score one short-handed goal, nonetheless two.”

Dallas dominated the early play, but Varlamov denied good chances for Johnny Oduya, Valeri Nichushkin and Tyler Seguin. Demers tied it for the Stars on the power play at 7:24 of the second.

Midway through the first period, Niemi saved a close-in shot by Soderberg with his pads and engulfed John Mitchell’s wrist shot from the slot.

Soderberg gained redemption during the first period’s only power play. He won a battle for the puck from Jamie Benn, skated in on Niemi and flipped a wrist shot into the upper left corner at 19:07.

In the second period, the Stars had the first 12 shots on goal, finally scoring on the ninth when Demers backhanded in a rebound from the blue paint.

Dallas’ goal appeared to come with a bonus: Soderberg hit Demers with a high stick that drew blood and a double-minor. Landeskog scored during the 4-minute power play, however, and Grigorenko put in his own rebound over Niemi’s glove for a 3-1 lead.

“I’m pretty tired after back-to-back games,” Varlamov said. “Those were very intense games for us. I think we almost died after the second period. We took too many penalties and then they were all over us. Thank God that we scored.”

NOTES: Avalanche RW Jack Skille left in the first period with a back injury after crashing into the boards following a shot that Niemi saved. … Colorado welcomed back D Erik Johnson, who missed nine games because of a lower-body injury, and LW Blake Comeau, who missed Friday’s game while his wife was giving birth to their second daughter. … The short-handed goals moved the Avalanche up to fifth in the NHL with six, trailing Ottawa (nine), Montreal (eight) and Dallas and Winnipeg (seven each). … Landeskog has three goals in two games vs. Dallas this season. … The Stars are 1-8-3 against Colorado in Ruff’s tenure as coach, including losses in both games this season. … The Stars scored once on five power plays, but gave up the two short-handed goals and are 4 for 33 over the last 12 games.

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide