Near Capacity Crowd Witnesses First Place Stars Take Down Grand Rapids
CEDAR PARK, TX – Jack Campbell made a career-high 42 saves and Travis Morin notched a goal and an assist to lead the Texas Stars to a 3-1 victory over the Grand Rapids Griffins in front of a near capacity crowd of 6,462 fans Saturday night at Cedar Park Center.
Grand Rapids struck first on a Jan Mursak goal at 14:16. Mursak beat Texas goaltender Jack Campbell with a wrist shot through traffic to give the Griffins a 1-0 lead. The Stars responded 87 seconds later with Justin Dowling’s 13th goal of the season. Dowling caught his own rebound off Brennan Evans’ stick and snapped a one-timer through the legs of Grand Rapids netminder Petr Mrazek to even the score at one. Texas took a 2-1 lead into the break thanks to a Travis Morin tally with just 7.4 seconds left in the period. Colton Sceviour raced down the right wing boards and found Morin at the top of the crease where he tipped the puck over Mrazek’s blocker, off the post and into the mesh.
Campbell was superb between the pipes in the middle frame, stopping all 17 Griffins shots he faced. The Stars were unable to extend the advantage despite throwing 15 shots of their own at Mrazek. There were no penalties in either of the first two sessions and Texas went into the third period with a 2-1 edge; Grand Rapids held a 32-25 lead in the shots column after two.
Matt Fraser scored his AHL-leading 33rd goal of the season on the Stars’ second of two consecutive power plays at 13:37 of the final frame. Travis Morin won a battle on the boards and found Fraser on the right wing, where he ripped a wrist shot past below the catching glove of Mrazek to widen the gap to 3-1. The tally was also Fraser’s league-leading 17th power play goal of the year. Texas went on the penalty kill immediately after the goal, but denied the Griffins any quality chances to maintain the two-goal advantage. Grand Rapids pulled Mrazek in the final two minutes to add an extra attacker, however, Campbell remained stout in net and the Stars finished off a solid 3-1 victory.
Texas starter Jack Campbell stopped a career high 42-of-43 Griffins shots to pick up his 16th win of the year. Grand Rapids starter Petr Mrazek turned away 32-of-35 Stars shots in a losing effort. The visitors outshot the Stars 43-35 and were 0-for-1 on the power play, while Texas was 1-for-2 with the man advantage.
The Stars continue their three-game home stand on Friday April 5th against the Oklahoma City Barons for a 7:30 p.m. faceoff at Cedar Park Center. Friday’s game against the Barons is another Texas Lottery Lucky Section Night, a $3 Beer Night and the fifth Texas Stars Player Magnet Giveaway. 2013-14 Season Tickets are now on sale. Put your deposit for 2013-14 season tickets and receive priority for both Texas Stars 2013 Calder Cup playoff tickets and 2013-14 season seat selection. For more information on Texas Stars season tickets call (512) GO-STARS (467-8277) or visit www.TexasStarsHockey.com.