ST. LOUIS – The Dallas Stars are trying to make a late playoff push.
Against a team battling for first place overall in the league, the Stars stepped up their game.
Colton Sceviour got the first two goals and Antoine Roussel scored on a breakaway in the third period to give the Stars a 4-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Saturday night.
“This was a huge test for us,” goalie Kari Lehtonen said. “One of the best teams in the league and we played last night and travelled here late, and showed up, and it was just a huge win.”
Cody Eakin had a goal and assist and Lehtonen made 33 saves for the Stars, who have won four of five in pursuit of a Western Conference playoff spot.
Dallas entered the day three points out of a playoff spot before winning for the second straight night and saddling the Blues with just their sixth regulation home loss.
The Stars opened a five-game trip after beating the Predators 7-3 on Friday and won without production from their top line of Tyler Seguin, Jamie Benn and Valeri Nichushkin.
“I don’t know if desperation is the word. That kind of sounds bad,” Sceviour said. “But definitely we feel like these are games we need to win.
“This is a start and we want to build off it.”
Alex Steen had a pair of power-play goals for the Blues, who had been 8-0-2 in their previous 10 at home including an overtime loss to Dallas earlier this month.
St. Louis fell one point behind Boston for first place overall in the NHL after a showing coach Ken Hitchcock labeled “sloppy.”
“What we are right now is too inconsistent,” Hitchcock said. “We’ve got too many players who are having good games and then are following it up with poor games.”
“Have to send a few messages here in the next couple games and see if we can get everybody’s attention.”
Dallas led 1-0 and 3-1 against the Central Division leaders.
Roussel skated in alone on Ryan Miller for the clincher after the puck hopped over defenceman Kevin Shattenkirk’s stick at the opposite blue line at 7:56 of the third. If the Blues had been ahead, Shattenkirk would not have been trying to hold the line.
“We feel like we’d been all over them in the third period, then they get the fourth one,” Steen said. “We were a little late tonight.”
Steen has 33 goals on the season. He scored on a deflection from the high slot in the second period and beat Lehtonen scrambling across the net on a long rebound in the opening minute of the third, each time shaving the deficit to one.
Sceviour has three goals the past two games and Eakin also has scored in consecutive games for the Stars.
Hitchcock picked a trio of former Stars—Steve Ott, Brenden Morrow and Derek Roy—for the opening faceoff. That line surrendered the only goal of the first period, with Ott’s turnover leading to Sceviour’s sixth of the season, and finished a combined minus-5.
Sceviour tapped in a rebound off his skate to make it 2-0 at 7:21 of the second.
“They’re not the prettiest goals, but we’ll take them,” Sceviour said.
Dallas needed just 25 seconds to answer Steen’s first goal on Eakin’s deflection.
Notes: Stars D Alex Goligoski tied his career high with four points against Nashville on Friday a day later when a scoring change gave him a fourth assist in a 7-3 victory over Nashville, and he had an assist in the second period against St. Louis. Goligoski’s other four-point game came with Pittsburgh when he had a goal and three assists against Tampa Bay on Jan. 5, 2011. … Stars F Vernon Fiddler earned his 200th career point on a second-period assist. … Stars coach Lindy Ruff worked his 1,239th game, tying Bryan Murray for 10th on the career list. … Shattenkirk had two assists and set career highs with 35 assists and 44 points. … Steen has three goals and four assists the past four games. … David Backes had an assist for 356 career points, passing Pierre Turgeon for 11th in Blues history.