Stars Finish Regular Season with AHL’s Best Record

Apr 22, 2014

Texas Opens 2014 Calder Cup Playoffs with Rival Oklahoma City

2013-14 Record: 48-18-3-7, 106 points (29-8-0-1 Home, 19-10-3-6 Road), First Place – West Division

Week 29 Recap:

The Texas Stars finished their fifth regular season with two games during Week 29, starting on Wednesday night in Oklahoma City, where Texas defeated the Oklahoma City Barons 2-1 at Cox Convention Center. Toby Petersen opened the scoring 1:46 into the game with his first point since December 21st, which also came against Oklahoma City. Rookies Alex Guptil and Taylor Peters picked up the assists on Petersen’s fifth goal of the season and Guptil’s assist marked his first professional career point. Steve Pinizzotto tied the game at 7:12 of the second period with a power-play goal off a rebound, but Kevin Henderson put the Stars back on top for good with his 12th goal of the season with just 32.5 seconds left in the period. Goaltender Cristopher Nilstorp stopped 24-of-25 shots he faced, including all 13 in the third period, to pick up his 27th win of the season. The win extended Texas’ franchise record point streak to 13 games.

The Stars returned to Cedar Park Center to wrap up their season against the Abbotsford Heat on Saturday for Fan Appreciation Night. Before the game, AHL President and CEO David Andrews presented the awards Texas claimed during the year, which included Travis Morin’s league MVP award and AHL First All-Star Team award, Curtis McKenzie’s Rookie of the Year award and AHL All-Rookie Team award, Colton Sceviour’s AHL First All-Star Team award, the John D. Chick Trophy as the West Division Champions and the Macgregor Kilpatrick Trophy as the AHL’s regular season points champion. Once the game started, Abbotsford jumped out to a 3-0 lead after the first period. Markus Granlund scored goals 2:38 minutes apart and Emile Poirier found the net with 1:39 left in the period. The Stars stormed right back scoring three-straight goals to tie the game. At 9:35 of the second period, Jyrki Jokipakka’s shot from the point on the power-play deflected off of Taylor Vause and into the net for Vause’s third goal of the season. Five minutes later, Matej Stransky batted the puck out of the air past unsuspecting Heat goaltender Joni Ortio. McKenzie tied the game at three 5:44 into the third period, hammering home a rebound in front of the net. With about 10 minutes left in regulation, Corey Locke put Abbotsford back in front 4-3. Texas battled back hard, putting 13 shots on Ortio in the period, but was unable to put the tying goal past him. The loss was only the seventh at home for the Stars and first regulation loss since March 12th against Charlotte, ending the franchise record point streak at 13 games.

Week 30 Preview:

Texas beings the 2014 Calder Cup Playoffs as the number one seed in the Western Conference for the second straight season. The Stars will battle the eighth-seeded Oklahoma City Barons, also for the season straight season, in the best-of-five Western Conference Quarterfinals. Playing in a 2-3 format with the final three games at Cedar Park Center, if necessary, Game 1 is on Wednesday, April 23rd and Game 2 on Saturday, April 26th at Cox Convention Center in downtown Oklahoma City.

The Texas Stars will be hosting official watch parties for both road games at the Pluckers Lakeline location. Watch all the excitement of the Stars’ first round playoff games at Oklahoma City on the Pluckers’ television, while enjoying great food and beverage specials and play Texas Stars trivia during the intermissions. Wednesday’s Game 1 the puck drops at 7:00 p.m., but the fun starts at 6 p.m., while Saturday’s Game 2 puck drop is at 8:00 p.m. and the fun starts at 7:00 p.m.

C Travis Morin (32-56-88) led the league in points and assisted, finished tied for second in goals and has eight points (1 goal, 7 assists) and a +4 rating in his last five games. LW Curtis McKenzie (27-38-65) led all AHL rookies in points and assists, ranked ninth overall in points, tied for eighth in shots (215)  and has eight points (6 goals, 2 assists) and a +4 rating in his last eight games. G Cristopher Nilstorp (27-12-4, 2.45 GAA, 0.918 save pct.) is tied for fourth in the AHL in wins and has won seven-straight games, posting a 1.84 GAA, 0.936 save pct. and one shutout during that span. RW Brett Ritchie (22-26-48) is tied for eighth in shots (215) and has 14 points (7 goals, 7 assists) and a +15 rating in his last 10 games. D Maxime Fortunus (6-22-28) finished tied for ninth on the team in points and has five points (1 goal, 4 assists) and a +3 rating in his last five games.

Week 30 Schedule:
(All games are broadcast LIVE over the Internet at www.TexasStarsHockey.com and the free radio button on the schedule page of www.ahllive.com and can be viewed via internet pay-per-view video on www.ahllive.com. All times listed in Central Time)

Wednesday, April 23 – 7:00 p.m. – Cox Convention Center – Oklahoma City, OK

@ Oklahoma City Barons (36-29-2-9, 83 pts.)
Third Place, West Division – Eighth Seed, Western Conference

Saturday, April 26 – 8:00 p.m. – Cox Convention Center – Oklahoma City, OK

@ Oklahoma City Barons (36-29-2-9, 83 pts.)
Third Place, West Division – Eighth Seed, Western Conference
·         Team Notes: The Oklahoma City Barons finished the 2013-14 season registering points in nine of their final 11 games (7-2-0-2, 16 pts.) to claim the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. Oklahoma City swept the Iowa Wild at home winning 4-3 in overtime on April 18th and 3-2 in a shootout on April 19th at Cox Convention Center. This season, the Barons have a losing record against the Texas Stars (4-6-2-0, 10 pts.), including losing their last three meetings. Oklahoma City ranks near the top of the AHL offensively, ranking seventh in shots per game (32.05), tied for sixth in goals per game (3.14) and has the league’s third best power-play (22.1%), scoring the third most power-play goals (74) in the AHL. Though on defense, the Barons allowed the 28th most goals per game (3.37), ranked last in shots allowed per game (33.72) and had the 28th ranked penalty-kill (78.9%) giving up the fourth most power-play goals (70). Since Oklahoma City gave up the most shots per game, it is no surprise that goaltender Richard Bachman led the AHL in saves, stopping 1514-of-1667 (0.908 save pct.) shots during the season. The Edmonton Oilers returned five of the Baron’s top-15 scorers on April 13th as well as assigning the seventh overall pick of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, defensemen Darnell Nurse, to the Barons from Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds of the OHL. In 64 games with the Greyhounds, Nurse put up 50 points (13 goals, 37 assists) finishing seventh on the team. Marc Arcobello, who has 28 points (10 goals, 18 assists) and a +11 rating in 15 games, has not played for Oklahoma City since March 15th with a shoulder injury.
·         Leading Scorer: Roman Horak (C) – 55 points (23 goals, 32 assists) and a +10 rating in 66 GP.
Leading Goaltender: Richard Bachman (G) – 2.99 GAA, 0.908 save pct., 26-19-6 and 2 SO in 52 GP.
Who’s Hot: C Roman Horak (23-32-55) leads the team in points and has eight points (3 goals, 5 assists) and a +1 rating in his last five games. RW Matthew Ford (25-22-47) leads the team in goals and has 14 points (10 goals, 4 assists) in his last 15 games. C Anton Lander (18-34-52) ranks second in points and has four assists and a +2 rating in his last three games. LW Austin Fyten (7-13-20) has four points (3 goals, 1 assist) and a +2 rating in his last four games.

Week 29 Game Results:

April 16, 2014                                     Texas 2 @ Oklahoma City 1
April 19, 2014                                     Abbotsford 4 @ Texas 3

Stars Player of the Week: (Week 29)

Kevin Henderson – G – #8                           2 GP, 2 Points (1 G, 1 A), -3, 1 GWG

Kevin Henderson has made a big impact since joining the Stars on March 9th. The Toronto, Ontario native has nine points (5 goals, 4 assists) and a +2 rating in his 15 games with Texas, but scored his first game-winning goal for the club on Wednesday at Oklahoma City, which clinched the 2013-14 Macgregor Kilpatrick Trophy. Henderson then added an assist on Saturday vs. Abbotsford to record his 100th career pro point. For the season he has 23 points (12 goals, 11 assists) and 22 penalty minutes in 65 games combined between Milwaukee and Texas.

Stars Quick Hits:

·         MUST BE AWARD SEASON – Before Saturday’s game, the Texas Stars received all the awards they won during the 2013-14 season. As a team, the Stars won the John D. Chick Trophy for winning the West Division and the Macgregor Kilpatrick Trophy as the regular season point leader.

·         INDIVIDUAL AWARDS GALORE – Texas players picked up six individual awards during the 2013-14 season. Travis Morin won the Les Cunningham Award as league MVP, the John B. Sollenberger Trophy as the leading point scorer in the AHL. Curtis McKenzie won the Red Garrett Memorial Award as rookie of the year and was named to the AHL All-Rookie Team. Colton Sceviour and Morin were both named to the AHL First All-Star Team.

·         NEW RECORD POINT STREAK – The Stars set a new franchise record for longest point streak, with their 2-1 victory over the Oklahoma City Barons last Wednesday. Between March 15th and April 16th, Texas went 12-0-0-1 (24 pts.), including winning a franchise best 11-straight games.

·         THE STREAKING SWEDE – Goaltender Cristopher Nilstorp has won his last seven consecutive starts, dating back to March 5th, and has gone 10-0-0-1 since his last loss on February 17th. Nilstorp has a 1.84 GAA, 0.936 save pct. and 1 shutout during his seven-game win streak. The Stars’ franchise record for consecutive wins is 10, set by Brent Krahn during the 2009-10 inaugural season.

·         A PAIR OF FIRSTS – During Week 30 left wing Alex Guptil picked up his first professional point on Wednesday with an assist at Oklahoma City and Brandon Troock made his professional debut with the Stars on Saturday against Abbotsford.

·         MORIN REACHES 350 – Center Travis Morin played in his 350th career AHL game on Saturday night versus Abbotsford. Morin has 295 points (99 goals, 196 assists) in his AHL career, including 294 points (99 goals, 195 assists) in 345 games with the Texas Stars.

·         THE 100 GAME CLUB – Defensemen Hubert Labrie played in his 100th career AHL game on Saturday versus Abbotsford. Labrie has 13 points (4 goals, 9 assists) and 112 penalty minutes in his AHL career, all with the Texas Stars.

·         PETERSEN HITS 550 – Center Toby Petersen played in his 550th career AHL game on Saturday against Abbotsford. Petersen has 374 points (148 goals, 226 assists) in his AHL career, including 108 games and 36 points (13 goals, 23 assists) with the Texas Stars.

·         THE CENTURY MARK – Left wing Kevin Henderson recorded his 100th professional point with an assist on Saturday against Abbotsford. Henderson has 100 points (44 goals, 56 assists) in 304 professional games played, including 298 career AHL games with Milwaukee and Texas.

·         NEW CALDER EXPERIENCES – There are 11 players currently on the Texas Stars roster looking to make their Calder Cup Playoff debuts. They are: William Wrenn, Jyrki Jokipakka, Jack Campbell, Hubert Labrie, Taylor Peters, Matej Stransky, Radek Faksa, Alex Guptill, Brendan Ranford, Derek Hulak, Branden Troock.

Stars Week 29 Transactions:

April 15 – ADD – Branden Troock (RW) – Signed ATO, called up from Seattle (WHL).

Texas Stars Team Leaders:

Games Played:               Curtis McKenzie (75)
Goals:                             Travis Morin & Colton Sceviour (32)
Assists:                           Travis Morin (56)
Points:                            Travis Morin (88)
Plus/Minus:                     Justin Dowling (+21)
Penalty Minutes:             Curtis McKenzie (92)
Power Play Goals:          Chris Mueller (15)
Short Handed Goals:      Brendan Ranford (2)
Game-Winning Goals:    Colton Sceviour (6)
Shots:                             Colton Sceviour (228)
Shooting Percentage:     Scott Glennie (16.9%)
Saves:                             Cristopher Nilstorp (1,178)
Wins:                              Cristopher Nilstorp (27)
GAA:                              Jack Campbell (1.49)
Save Percentage:           Jack Campbell (0.942)
Shutouts:                        Jack Campbell (4)

The Stars will begin the 2013-2014 Calder Cup Playoffs as they face the Oklahoma City Barons for Game 1 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals on Wednesday, April 23rd for a 7:00 p.m. face off at Cox Convention Center. The Stars will return to Cedar Park Center for Game 3 on Wednesday, April 30th for a 7:30 p.m. puck drop. Texas Stars’ 2014 Calder Cup playoff ticket packages are on sale now! Reserve your seats for all Calder Cup playoff games at Cedar Park Center at a discounted rate. For more information on Texas Stars playoff tickets call (512) GO-STARS (467-8277) or visit www.TexasStarsHockey.com.

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