Chris Mueller Has Goal, Assist in Stars Defeat
DES MOINES, IA – Chris Mueller scored a goal and an assist and Travis Morin, the CCM/AHL Player of the Month for October, extended his 2013-14 point streak to 10 games , but the Iowa Wild scored three power play goals on their way to a 4-2 win over the Texas Stars Friday night at Wells Fargo Arena.
The Wild grabbed the first lead and scored the first AHL goal ever allowed by Stars goaltender Josh Robinson. Iowa defenseman Jon Landry’s shot from the left point was blocked in front by Texas defender Aaron Rome, but the puck angle directly to the stick of Erik Haula at the bottom of the right face off circle. Haula had an open net to shoot home for a power play goal at 5:12. Five minutes late the Wild doubled their lead when Raphael Bussieres setup Taylor Matson for a back-door tap-in at 10:15. The Stars out-shot Iowa 15-7 in the first period, but trailed 2-0.
The Wild extended their lead to 3-0 just 1:33 into the second period on Erik Haula’s second power play goal of then night, as he beat Robinson on a shot through the pads. Texas finally got on the board at 14:47 on rookie Brendan Ranford’s third goal of the year. Ranford reacted quickly to track down a rebound from a Toby Petersen shot and the rookie lifted his shot over the fallen Darcy Kuemper in the Iowa net.
Early in the third period, the Stars power play awoke to cut the deficit to one. Mike Hedden made a clever cross-zone pass to the left circle to set up a Chris Mueller one-timer that ripped into the net at 6:42 to make the score 3-2. It was Mueller’s fifth goal of the season and was assisted by Hedden and Travis Morin. Morin’s assist was his AHL-leading 20th point of the year, it extended his point streak to 10 games and he now has a point in 17 consecutive regular season AHL games dating back to last season. The Wild halted the Stars momentum two minutes later as they cashed in for their third power play goal of the night. Jason Zucker slapped home a one-timer from a Jonathon Blum pass at 8:54 to regain Iowa’s two-goal lead. Texas continued to fire shots on Kuemper, but he stood fast to secure the 4-2 win.
Iowa goalie Darcy Kuemper finished the game with 32 saves on 34 shots to record his third win of the season, while Stars net minder Josh Robinson suffered his first career AHL loss, stopping 15-of-19 shots. Texas out-shot the Wild 34-19 and went 1-for-5 on the power play; Iowa was 3-for-7 with the man-advantage.
Note: Due to an injury to Stars goaltender Cristopher Nilstorp, Texas signed Derek Hender to an amateur tryout contract for the purposes of serving as the team’s emergency backup goaltender.
Texas will complete its 10-day, five-game road trip on Saturday, November 2nd with a grudge match against the Iowa Wild at 7:05 p.m. at Wells Fargo Arena. The Stars will return home on Friday, November 8th for the beginning of Stars & Stripes Military Appreciation Weekend presented by Sport Clips, facing Milwaukee at 7:30 p.m. at Cedar Park Center. The November 8th game is a $3 Draft Beer & $4 Robert Mondavi Private Selection Wine Night and is a reusable shopping tote bag giveaway night presented by ABC Home & Commercial Services. Pro-rated full and partial 2013-14 Texas Stars Season Tickets are on sale now. For more information on Texas Stars season tickets call (512) GO-STARS (467-8277) or visit www.TexasStarsHockey.com.