|Sam Gagner keeps a keen eye on the puck as Marty Turco deflects it away from the net during the first period of Edmonton's 5-2 win over Dallas Wednesday, Dec. 3 at Rexall Place. (Photo by Andy Devlin/EOHC)
Although Dallas' Mike Modano posted two goals to nearly erase a 3-0 deficit, Edmonton's Ales Hemsky and Andrew Cogliano added two of their own in the final minute to seal a 5-2 win for the Oilers Wednesday night. Shawn Horcoff, Lubomir Visnovsky, and Marc Pouliot scored Edmonton's first three goals, while Mathieu Garon stopped 23 shots for the win.
For the first time in six games and only 10th time this season, the Oilers got the strong start they were looking for by scoring the game's opening goal. Less than a minute after Kyle Brodziak fired the first shot on Stars netminder Marty Turco, Shawn Horcoff surged back into the visiting zone and directed a slapshot into the net to give the Oilers a 1-0 lead after only 1:11 of competition.
By the period's midway point, Edmonton had tallied seven shots while Dallas registered three on Mathieu Garon. At 11:35, Stars winger Loui Eriksson took a tripping minor, but Turco stopped the Oilers' lone powerplay shot to keep his club within one.
Although a second Oilers powerplay would come and go without a goal, the club connected on a third opportunity in the frame's final minute. With 12 seconds left on the clock and Landon Wilson serving a hooking minor, Andrew Cogliano fed blueliner Lubomir Visnovsky at the point who snuck a slapshot under the crossbar to put the Oilers up 2-0 after 20 minutes.
Rob Schremp talks about his first period of NHL action this season.
Four minutes into the second period, Marc Pouliot made it 3-0 for the Oil. Standing at the bottom of the face-off circle, Pouliot fired a sharp-angle shot that bumbled past Turco for his second goal of the season. For their roles in the play, call-up Rob Schremp earned his first NHL assist in his first NHL game of the season and Visnovsky earned his second point of the game.
At the nine-minute mark, Oiler rookie Liam Reddox was called for goaltender interference, providing the first test of the game for home penalty killers. Despite surrending two shots, Garon and his skaters earned an A for their play by keeping the Stars scoreless.
A fourth Stars penalty and second Oilers infraction gave specialty teams more time in the spotlight, but neither club managed a goal and the Oilers headed to the third period up 3-0 and 16-15 on the shot clock.
Goal-scorer Marc Pouliot comments on the game after 40 minutes.
Shortly after Schremp narrowly missed an open net in the first minute of the third, the Stars lit the lamp at the opposite end of the ice. Garon kicked out an initial shot, but Mike Modano was on the doorstep and redirected the rebound into the mesh to get his club back within two.
Buoyed by the goal, Dallas cracked the 20-shot mark by tallying six attempts to Edmonton's one in the period's first nine minutes. Consecutive Oilers penalties offered the Stars their third and fourth powerplays, but the club was unable to further narrow the gap.
Until the final two minutes of regulation, that is. With 1:40 left on the clock, Modano snapped the puck past Garon to notch his second goal of the game and get his club within one.
But with Turco out of his net and six Stars skaters on the ice, Ales Hemsky quickly renewed the two-goal lead with an empty netter at 19:09. Then at 19:47, Cogliano caught a piece of the action with his seventh goal of the season, sealing a 5-2 win for the Oilers Wednesday night.