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Five-goal second period helps Kings stave off Avalanche

By Dave Reed

PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

DENVER (Ticker) -- The Los Angeles Kings' five-goal second

period nearly fell by the wayside.

Alexander Frolov recorded a pair of goals in the session and the

Kings held on for a 6-5 triumph over the Colorado Avalanche on

Wednesday.

Jarret Stoll and All-Star Dustin Brown notched a goal and an

assist apiece and Kyle Calder and defenseman Jack Johnson also

tallied for Los Angeles, which posted its second straight win

after going 0-3-1 in its previous four contests.

"It was a huge two wins for us right before the All-Star break,

and hopefully it will give us some confidence when we get back,"

Frolov said.

Michal Handzus, Anze Kopitar, Patrick O'Sullivan and defenseman

Kyle Quincey each notched two assists for the Kings, who snapped

a four-game skid against the Avalanche.

Chris Stewart and T.J. Hensick recorded a goal and an assist

apiece and Marek Svatos, Brian Willsie and Cody McLeod also

scored for Colorado, which trailed, 6-2, late in the second

period in this one.

"It just shows what this team can do when they show up and play

a 20-minute period," Stewart said. "In this league, you have to

play a full 60 minutes to win games."

Darcy Tucker and defenseman Ruslan Salei both set up a pair of

tallies for the Avalanche, who fell to 1-4-0 in their last five

games.

"It was a crazy game," said Colorado's Wojtek Wolski, who set up

Svatos' first-period tally that tied the game at 1-1. "The puck

just seemed to bounce for them early and they got a couple goals

really quickly, and that kind of put us down. But we seemed to

find a way to get back into it."

With the game tied at 1-1, the Kings scored three times in a

span of 3:36 early in the second period to seize control.

Frolov unleashed a shot from above the left faceoff circle that

beat goaltender Peter Budaj 85 seconds into the session, and

Johnson netted his first goal of the season from nearly the same

spot just 29 seconds later.

"We saw that we are capable of scoring the last two nights,"

Frolov said, referring to the Kings' 5-2 victory over the

Minnesota Wild on Tuesday. "We have to learn how to play when

we have the lead in the third period. We're getting better."

Stoll gave the Kings a three-goal lead 5:01 into the period,

when he knocked in Brown's centering pass for his 10th tally of

the campaign, chasing Budaj in the process. The Slovakian

netminder allowed four goals on 15 shots before being relieved

by Andrew Raycroft, who also made 11 saves.

After Hensick tallied 8 1/2 minutes later to cut the deficit to

4-2, Frolov and Brown struck 21 seconds apart to give Los

Angeles a four-goal cushion with 5:28 remaining in the session.

"You never know what's going to happen, especially in today's

NHL," Brown said. "We've come back from three goals, and they

were close tonight.

"Those goals ended up being the difference. It was a huge two

points for us."

Stewart scored with eight seconds to go in the period for his

fourth point in the last three games, drawing Colorado within

6-3.

With added confidence, the Avalanche struck again as Willsie

knocked down goalie Jonathan Quick's clearing attempt before

wristing it into the net for his first of the season at 5:53 of

the third.

"It would have been a pretty nice assist if the guy was on my

team," Quick said. "Unfortunately, he wasn't. He made a nice

play, a nice shot."

Just 1:43 later, McLeod buried a rebound to make it a one-goal

game, but Quick and the Kings thwarted the Avalanche over the

final 13:24 of the contest.

"It's a great game for a rookie goaltender, to be able to deal

with what's going on with emotion of the game, the fans and the

opposing team really jamming the net," Kings coach Terry Murray

said. "He'll grow from this one."

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