Texas Stars Report
The Texas Stars went 3-0-0 over the past week, extending their points streak to seven games (6-0-1) and moving into the top spot in the American Hockey League’s Western Conference with a 36-16-8 record.
And longtime Texas Star Francis Wathier will finish out the season in Milwaukee, after the Stars and Admirals swapped players over the weekend.
Here’s the latest on Dallas’ AHL affiliate.
Tuesday March 4: Texas 3, Abbotsford 1
Jack Campbell stopped 23 of 24 shots in his first full start since returning from a knee injury and Dustin Jeffrey scored two goals as Texas won 3-1 at Abbotsford on Tuesday. After Abbotsford scored 15:40 in the game to take a 1-0 lead, Jeffrey scored with 39 seconds left in the first to tie and then scored what would hold up as the game-winner at 8:55 of the second period. Brett Ritchie extended the lead to 3-1 with a goal at 10:29 of the third. Campbell ran his record to 6-0-0 with the victory.
Wednesday March 5: Texas 4, Abbotsford 3 (OT)
Cameron Gaunce’s goal 2:04 into overtime lifted the Stars to a 4-3 victory at Abbotsford and pushed them into first place in the Western Conference. Travis Morin, Jamie Oleksiak and Scott Glennie also scored for Texas, which surrendered a 3-1 lead in the game. Cristopher Nilstorp got the start in goal and stopped 33 of 36 shots.
Saturday March 8: Texas 3, Charlotte 0
Campbell stopped 23 shots for his first shutout of the season and Jeffrey, Colton Sceviour and Patrick Nemeth scored goals as Texas ran its points streak to seven games (6-0-1) with a 3-0 win over Charlotte at Cedar Park Center Saturday night.
“It was great. I was really looking forward to playing at home, it’s been such a long time. The fans never disappoint and it’s nice to get two points for them,” said Campbell, who played his first game in Cedar Park since Dec. 18. “They had some pretty good scoring chances and I felt pretty good. I thought the boys played tremendous in front of me, took control of the game and it was a big two points.”
Campbell improved to 7-0-0 on the season.
The week ahead
Wednesday March 12, Charlotte at Texas, 7:30 p.m.
Saturday March 15, Texas at Chicago, 7:00 p.m.
Sunday March 16, Texas at Chicago, 3:00 p.m.
Wathier assigned to Milwaukee
Francis Wathier, who has been part of Dallas’ minor league system since 2005-06, was assigned to the Milwaukee Admirals over the weekend. In exchange, the Nashville Predators assigned forward Kevin Henderson to the Texas Stars from Milwaukee.
“I talked to Francis (Sunday) and thanked him for his service. He’s been a long-time player for us,” said Texas GM Scott White. “He wasn’t in, we have a veteran issue, the team had been rolling and it is hard to get in sometimes. I know that he wants to extend his North American career and I thought as we approached the AHL deadline, I started to make some calls and there was a fit. I think the team he is going to will give him an opportunity to extend and play and get going again.”
The veteran issue White mentioned is a development rule that limits the number of veterans that can play on any given night in an AHL game. With Dallas assigning Dustin Jeffrey to Texas, it left the 29-year-old Wathier as the odd-man out and Texas in a tough spot.
“You have to manage the roster,” said White. “It’s the first time we’ve had to deal with it in my tenure managing the minor league team. It is just one of those things. Hopefully it will work out. We got a player back who is looking for opportunity, too. Kevin Henderson’s year hasn’t been going as well as expected. Hopefully it will spark him and add to our depth down there.”
Henderson has 14 points (seven goals, seven assists) in 50 games with Milwaukee this season. He scored 17 goals in 67 games with the Admirals last season.
Wathier had nine points (five goals, four assists) in 48 games with Texas this season. Dallas drafted Wathier in the sixth round of the 2003 NHL Entry Draft. He’s been with the organization ever since and will remain Dallas property until his contract expires this summer.
*Jack Campbell, who had been out with a knee injury since Dec. 18, won both his starts last week, stopping 46 of 47 shots. Campbell is 7-0-0 this season for Texas with a 1.12 goals against average and .956 save percentage.
*C Travis Morin registered one goal and one assist last week, giving him a league-high 74 points (29 goals, 45 assists) in 55 games.
*RW Colton Sceviour scored one goal in three games last week, giving him 32 in 54 games this season. He leads the AHL in goal scoring and ranks third in points (63).
*LW Curtis McKenzie picked up one assist in three games. He has 55 points (21 goals, 34 assists) in 60 games and leads all AHL rookies in scoring and ranks seventh among all players.
*When F Dustin Jeffrey scored a goal last Tuesday in Abbotsford, it was his first goal in 13 games with Texas.
Here is the lineup Texas rolled out in its last game.
Mike Hedden – Justin Dowling – Brett Ritchie
Jamie Oleksiak – Derek Meech
Injured: Toby Petersen
3/9: G Cristopher Nilstorp recalled to Dallas (NHL) from Texas (AHL)
3/9: G Josh Robinson recalled to Texas (AHL) from Idaho (ECHL)
3/9: LW Francis Wathier assigned to Milwaukee (AHL) from Texas (AHL)
3/9: LW Kevin Henderson assigned to Texas (AHL) from Milwaukee (AHL)
3/5: C Chris Mueller assigned to Texas (AHL) from Dallas (NHL)
3/5: F Taylor Vause assigned to Idaho (ECHL) from Texas (AHL)
3/4: C Chris Mueller recalled by Dallas (NHL) from Texas (AHL)
The Idaho Steelheads, Dallas’ ECHL affiliate, went 1-2-0 over the past week. The Steelheads are 30-22-7 on the season, ranking fourth in the Mountain Division and fifth in the Western Conference.