Dallas is five points behind Pacific-leading Anaheim and two back of second-place San Jose. The Stars, the defending division champions, trailed the Ducks by 15 points on Jan. 15.
Ladislav Nagy got Dallas off to a fast start with a first-period goal, his first for the Stars since being acquired in a trade with the Phoenix Coyotes on Feb. 12.
Jere Lehtinen’s breakaway goal 40 seconds into the third period, his 20th of the season, gave Dallas a 4-0 lead.
Lehtinen has eight goals in his last 14 games, reaching the 20-goal mark for the seventh time in his career.
The Stars are 10-3-2 in their last 15 games, including a 7-1-1 run at home.
Corey Perry’s 14th goal ended Smith’s bid for his fourth shutout with 4:45 left.
Jean-Sebastien Giguere had 17 saves for the Ducks, 2-4-2 in their last eight games.
Smith was in net for the fourth time in the last seven games, including three starts. Coach Dave Tippett wants Smith to get more game action down the stretch to keep starter Marty Turco fresh for the playoffs. Smith beat the Ducks 1-0 on Feb. 10.
Turco is scheduled to start Dallas’ next game, Sunday at home against Vancouver.
Nagy gave Dallas the lead at 6:57 of the opening period when he redirected Loui Eriksson’s centring pass by Giguere for his ninth goal of the season.
Barch’s deflection at 10:14 of the first period – his second goal of the season – gave the Stars’ a 2-0 lead.
The Stars got lucky with about 1:20 left in the first period when Anaheim’s Tim Brent hit the goal post with a close-in shot while Smith was out of position.
Antti Miettinen’s pass went in off Jokinen’s skate at 13:47 of the second period for Jokinen’s 12th goal of the season, extending Dallas’ edge to 3-0.
Notes: The Stars and Ducks have two games left. They’ve split their first six meetings this season. … In a minor-league deal earlier Friday, the Stars acquired C Shane Endicott from the Ducks for future considerations. Endicott was playing for Milwaukee, Anaheim’s AHL affiliate, and was assigned by the Stars to Iowa, Dallas’ AHL minor league team. … Dallas F Eric Lindros missed his fifth straight game. Lindros has been slowed by the flu and what the club has termed a lower-body injury. … Stars C Patrik Stefan is out with a hip injury. … Anaheim C Todd Marchant missed his third straight game due to an abdominal strain.