DALLAS – Marty Turco gave the Dallas Stars some badly-needed home momentum.
Turco stopped 22 shots for his 38th career shutout, rookie Jamie Benn scored a power-play goal in the first period and the Stars beat the Carolina Hurricanes 2-0 on Monday night.
Brad Richards added a third-period power-play goal as the Stars followed up on Saturday night’s 5-3 home win over New Jersey to give Dallas consecutive home victories for the first time this season. Dallas hadn’t won two straight in regulation since defeating Vancouver and Edmonton on Feb. 13 and 19.
“There’s been a lot of talk about not winning two in a row,” Turco said. “We came out with an effort that deserved the win. We need to do that on a nightly basis.”
Dallas’ power play is starting to click, with the Stars scoring two goals or more with the man-advantage in three of the last four games.
“It’s just shots on the net,” Richards said. “Our guys are doing a really good job around the net.”
Manny Legace made 27 saves while the Hurricanes remained winless on the road this season (0-8-3).
Carolina had won two straight and was coming off its best streak of the season (3-0-2 in its previous five).
Benn’s goal off a rebound gave Dallas the lead at 9:30 of the first period, 24 seconds after Carolina’s Tom Kostopoulos began serving a cross-checking penalty.
“Right place at the right time,” Benn said.
The Stars should have led by more entering the first intermission, but shots by Jere Lehtinen and Stephane Robidas rang off the goal post.
The Hurricanes thought they’d tied it at 1 at 6:37 of the second period when the puck went over the goal line on an attempt by Ray Whitney. But after a video review, the goal was waved off when officials ruled that Whitney had kicked the puck onto his stick.
“I didn’t feel it hit (his stick), no,” Whitney said. “I took a swipe at it. Did I hit it, I don’t know. That was a big moment in the game. It would have been a huge momentum swing for us; a huge boost for us. Goals are tough to come by in this league the way it is.”
With Dallas on its fifth power play of the night on Carolina’s second delay-of-game penalty, Richards’ shot glanced off the stick of Carolina defenceman Joe Corvo, into the air and over Legace’s shoulder at 2:07 of the third period to extend Dallas’ edge to 2-0.
Carolina had 1:38 of a 5-on-3 early in the third period, but Turco made four saves during the two-man disadvantage to preserve his second shutout of the season.
“Special teams were huge tonight,” Stars captain Brenden Morrow said. “That was a big kill for us. Your goalie is always your best penalty killer and Marty made some big saves there.”
The Hurricanes were chasing the game for much of the night, having to kill eight power plays.
“We took too many penalties tonight that we didn’t need to take, and we had a 5-on-3 where we needed to put one in,” Carolina coach Paul Maurice said.
NOTES: Dallas D Nicklas Grossman is day to day with a lower-body injury. … Stars leading goal-scorer James Neal served the second of his two-game league suspension. … Richards has a nine-game points streak. … The Hurricanes haven’t won in Dallas since Feb. 11, 1996, when the franchise was based on Hartford. … Stars D Mark Fistric sustained a facial cut in the first period but got treatment and returned before the first intermission. … Carolina has played Dallas on the road only five times in the last 10 years. … Morrow fought Carolina’s Tim Gleason 25 seconds after the opening faceoff. … Carolina RW Tuomo Ruutu missed the third period with a lower-body injury. … Monday marked the 1,400th victory for the Minnesota-Dallas franchise.