Stars halt Maple Leafs’ streak with 7-goal outburst

Posted Thursday, Jan. 23, 2014  comments  Print Reprints
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Valeri Nichushkin scored two goals, and the Dallas Stars broke open a 2-1 lead with four second-period goals en route to a 7-1 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday night.

Jamie Benn had his 100th career goal and three assists for the Stars, becoming, at age 24, the first Dallas player to reach 100 career goals before his 25th birthday.

Cody Eakin added a goal and an assist, and Alex Goligowski, Sergei Gonchar and Tyler Seguin each had two assists for the Stars, who won their second game in a row since ending a 1-8-1 slide. Kari Lehtonen made 24 saves.

Nikolai Kulemin had the lone goal for Toronto, which saw its six-game winning streak come to a rough end.

After Nichushkin’s first goal, Toronto coach Randy Carlyle replaced Jonathan Bernier with James Reimer, who allowed the final four goals, including one on a power play by Shawn Horcoff and one short-handed by Rich Peverley.

Nichushkin, a rookie, had his first two-goal game to bring his season total to 11 goals in 48 games. He deflected Benn’s shot into the net for a 3-1 lead in the second period and put in a rebound in the third.

Trevor Daley also scored in the second period while each team had only four skaters on the ice.

Benn had given the Stars a short-lived 1-0 lead at 7:09 of the first period. His drive from the top of the slot went over Bernier and under the crossbar.

Thirty seconds later, Kulemin tied the game by deflecting a similar shot by teammate Carl Gunnarsson past Lehtonen.

The Stars regained the lead for good at 15:47 when Eakin fired a shot from the top of the right faceoff circle for his 12th goal, just 12 seconds after Dallas killed a penalty.

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