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Brad Richards, Brenden Morrow power Stars to 2-1 victory over Canucks

The Hockey News

The Hockey News

DALLAS - The Dallas Stars peppered Vancouver rookie goalie Cory Schneider with a flurry of shots, and finally a couple found the back of the net.

Brad Richards scored midway through the second period to put Dallas in front, Brenden Morrow added a third-period power-play goal, and the Stars beat Vancouver 2-1 despite Schneider's 45-save performance Friday night.

Marty Turco stopped 32 shots to help Dallas snap the Canucks' winning streak at three games. Mason Raymond scored for Vancouver, making the second stop on a five-game trip.

"We got a lead tonight, which helped a little bit," Richards said. "That's nice, because no matter how many saves (Schneider) is making, the first one kind of relaxes the bench a little bit and we realized that we can score on him."

Schneider was outstanding in his first start and second appearance of the season. Andrew Raycroft, who started four straight in place of the injured Roberto Luongo (ribs), got a break after a 5-2 victory Thursday night in Minnesota.

"It's only my sixth start so this is part of the process," Schneider said. "I'll have some good ones and I'm sure a few bad ones along the way. This helps my confidence. I learned a lot tonight. You never know when you're going to get your next chance. You've got to make the most of it."

The Canucks were weary, playing their ninth game in 14 days and third in four, and they got off to a slow start before finding their legs for a 17-7 shots advantage in the third period.

"You could tell we were out of gas, but we woke up in the third, came out flying, and nearly snuck out a point," Schneider said.

Turco held on as the Stars avoided their seventh overtime game. Dallas has won only once this season in games that have gone to overtime or the shootout.

"I think we got lucky and caught a tired team on the road and we took advantage of that," Richards said.

Dallas turned up the pressure in the first period, holding a 22-10 shots edge. But Schneider, the former Boston College star, was perfect, denying prime scoring chances by Mike Ribeiro and Loui Eriksson - both alone in the low slot - in the final three and a half minutes of the opening period.

The Stars finally cashed in on their 29th shot at 8:05 of the second period when Richards flicked Eriksson's centring pass by Schneider for a 1-0 lead.

Dallas had a chance to expand its advantage when Ribeiro went in on a breakaway, but Ribeiro got off a weak shot that Schneider was able to smother with 1:53 remaining in the second period. That left the Stars clinging to a 1-0 edge entering the third period despite a 40-17 shots advantage.

"They were the quicker and more effective team in the first two periods," Canucks coach Alain Vigneault said. "We had one player fresh and that was our goaltender. He had a great outing and gave us a chance to stay in it."

Morrow struck from close-in on a power play to make it 2-0 at 3:50 of the final period before Raymond ended Turco's bid for his 37th career shutout at 8:14.

The Canucks thought they'd tied it at 2 with 15:41 left when Henrik Sedin appeared to jam a loose puck past Turco, but officials ruled the whistle had already blown.

Vancouver was unable to capitalize on 18 seconds worth of a 5-on-3 with over six minutes left, and the Canucks fell to 3-6 on the road.

"It was one of those games where we didn't have it for 40 minutes," Vancouver's Ryan Kesler said. "Cory played an unbelievable game and that last 20 minutes, we left everything on the ice."

Notes: LW James Neal, who leads the Stars with nine goals, was scratched due to a groin injury and is listed as day-to-day. ... Vancouver was completing the fourth of 14 back-to-backs this season. ... Schneider was playing in his 10th NHL game. ... D Shane O'Brien returned for the Canucks after serving a one-game league suspension on Thursday night. ... Luongo, who missed his sixth straight game, is expected to return to the lineup next week.


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