Needing only one standing point to clinch the fifth spot in the West, the Barons headed to Cedar Park, Texas after demoralizing a San Antonio Rampage team only 24 hours prior. The plan was simple from the beginning for the Barons, and that was to get the puck on the net as often as possible and from various angles. Getting those pucks on net against Stars goaltender Richard Bachman is the best solution to counteract his quickness. His record of 28-18-5-6 is sharp, but his .926 GAA is phenomenal for a rookie in net.
The first period began fast and furious for the Barons, and the shots would be owned by the Giroux-Moran-McDonald line with no success. The scoring began in period two with a dandy of a pass from Tanner House to Milan Kytnar who chipped the puck over Bachman's shoulder. Colin McDonald would add another after picking up a rebounded Moran shot, and poking in goal number 41 of the season.
At the other end, Jeff Deslauriers continued to make incredible saves, but wouldn't be truly tested until late in period two and the beginning of period three. JDD continues to surge when his team needs him the most.
Period three was "low and slow" which is common for a Stars vs. Barons game. Few penalties, but both teams were shrewd defensively. Deslauriers continued to appear unbeatable, stopping several impressive shots by the Stars.
The Barons would outlast the Stars, and keep them off the scoresheet. Deslauriers would earn his third shutout in the last four games. Coach Nelson appears to have his team poised to make a stellar tear through the playoffs.
The Copper & Blue Three Stars:
★★★ - Milan Kytnar
★★ - Colin McDonald
★ - Jeff Deslauriers
Random Game Notes
- Oklahoma City has officially pushed a Calgary Flames affiliated team out of playoff contention. Then again, the Abbotsford Heat didn't do themselves any favors by tanking tonight 3-0 against the Lake Erie Monsters.
- The Barons could climb out of the fifth place West/fourth place North playoff spot due to a Peoria Rivermen loss tonight. They could indeed climb in the rankings (4th or even 3rd) in the West in tomorrow's game.
- Omark, Hartikainen, Petry - all could arrive to play with the Barons in the next week or so. Their arrival is welcome, but also throws a wrench in the configurations that have suddenly seemed comfortable. Where? How? and When? are all questions that will be answered in the coming days by the Barons/Oilers management.