3 Shots of the Game

It's playoff time and the Texas Stars have completed 2 games in the first round against the San Diego Gulls at the H-E-B Center at Cedar Park. On Thursday the Stars gave up the first game to the Gulls in a 3-1 loss. Last night, Saturday, was payback time and the Stars came away with a commanding 5-1 win. The team hits the road this week to play out the rest of the series in San Diego. It will take 2 wins on the Gulls' ice for the Stars to advance to the next round.

The first shot from Thursday's game (above) is Brendan Ranford battling it out to get to the puck in a corner. The second shot is Travis Morin facing off against former Texas Star Chris Mueller. The third shot is Curtis McKenzie tumbling over the Gulls' goaltender, with a little help from the Gulls' defense of course.

Full image gallery from Thursday's game is here.

The first shot from Saturdays game is a beauty of a goal for Matt Mangene. The puck is seen in flight into the net. The second shot is Brett Ritchie showing no brotherly love to younger sibling Nick Ritchie. The third shot is a rebounded puck in front of Jack Campbell's net as the Gulls pushed hard to get some points on the board. He did make the save on the rebound.

Full image gallery from Saturday's game is here.

 

3 Shots of the Game - Stars vs Barracuda

The Texas Stars had a pair of games this weekend against the San Jose Barracuda. It was Military Appreciation weekend and the Stars were sporting tiger stripe camo jerseys. The special jerseys were auctioned off for charity. It was an exciting weekend all around as the Stars managed to clinch a spot in the Calder Cup playoffs. 

There weren't many high points of the Friday game for the Stars. The Barracuda shut the Stars out with a 3-0 win. It was a tough game to watch as the Stars failed to get a single puck in the net. The first shot above is an impressive 2 for 1 hit by Niklas Hansson to tie up two opponents at once. The second shot is an ice spray that got me through the lens hole in the glass as Jason Dickinson grabbed the puck in the corner with an opponent right on the heels of his skates. The third shot is a solid check by Jesse Blacker on a race to the puck in the corner behind the Stars' net.

Full image gallery from Friday's game is here.

Saturday's game didn't look so good for the Stars as the Barracuda struck first and at one point had a 3 goal lead on the Stars. Maxime Lagace started in net for the Stars and was replaced by Jack Campbell after the 3rd goal. Two more shots would get by Campbell before the Stars sprang to life about mid game and took control of the game. The Stars turned a 3 goal deficit into a 3 goal lead for a 8-5 game win and a clinched playoff spot. The first shot above is Jason Dickinson getting the puck and himself into the Barracuda net. The second shot is Curtis McKenzie barreling over his opponent in a fierce battle for the puck around the net. The third shot is a deflected puck from a shot on Campbell's net heading straight for this photographer's position. No lenses were harmed.

Full image gallery from Saturday's game is here.

3 Shots of the Game - Stars vs Wild & Moose

The Texas Stars had back to back games on Friday and Saturday nights this weekend. Friday was the second game in a week against the Iowa Wild. After a win by a healthy margin against the Wild last Wednesday, hopes were high for a repeat. It was a hard fought battle on the ice with the teams exchanging goals until ending 3-3 in regulation. The Wild would score the final winning goal in the overtime period. 

The first shot above is Brandan Troock celebrating as the puck makes its way into the Wild net. The second shot is Matt Mangene battling it out for the puck deep in the Stars' end. It was one of those shots where I got my lens out of the hole in the glass just in time! The third shot is a valiant scoring attempt by Curtis McKenzie in the overtime period. Coming in at speed with a defenseman tailing him, McKenzie lost his edge and slid to the ice.

Full image gallery from Friday is here.

Saturday's game was against the Manitoba Moose and that night went heavily in the Stars' favor as they trounced the Moose with a 6-1 win. The Stars' absolutely dominated the game and racked up twice the shots on goal as they did the previous night. 

The first shot above is Curtis McKenzie being "escorted" into the Moose defensive zone. The second shot is a goal by Cole Ully. I didn't catch the puck in flight off of the quick snap in my burst of frames but the look on the goalie's face makes it obvious where the puck ended up. The third shot is Stars goalie Maxime Lagace swatting away a shot on goal with his stick.

Full image gallery from Saturday is here.

3 Shots of the Game - Stars vs Monsters

The Texas Stars had a couple of games against the Lake Erie Monsters over the weekend at Cedar Park Center. Both games were nail biters but the Stars came away with wins in each. It was an overtime victory on Saturday and they got it done in regulation on Sunday with a tight 2-1 final score. 

In Saturday's game (above) the first shot is Curtis McKenzie celebrating after getting puck into the Monsters' net. The second shot is a huge face-off win by captain Travis Morin. His opponent seemed stunned by a lightning fast puck grab and turnaround. The third shot is Maxime Lagace making a save in the midst of an intense battle in his crease. The full image gallery from Saturday is here.

The first shot from Sunday is a beautiful pad save by Lagace while fighting off his opponent with his glove hand. The second shot is Jason Dickinson kicking up a snow flurry while trying to slow down before impact with the glass after coming in hot against an opponent to get to the puck in the corner. The third shot is Travis Morin dishing out a hip check that took Sifers airborne. The full image gallery from Sunday is here.

3 Shots of the Game - Stars vs Gulls

The Texas Stars had another double header weekend, this time taking on the San Diego Gulls Friday and Saturday nights. The teams each got a win in the heated games. The Gulls won by a goal Friday while the Stars had a resounding 5-2 victory on Saturday. 

The first shot above from Friday's game is Derek Hulak leading the Stars into the offensive zone through the Gulls' defense. In the second shot, Matt Mangene applies some defensive pressure in the crease of the Stars' net. The third shot is Julius Honka racing for possession of the puck deep in the corner of the Stars' end.

Full image gallery from Friday is here.

Curtis McKenzie fights to gain control of an airborne puck behind the Stars' net in the first shot from Saturday's game. The second shot is Gemel Smith maneuvering the puck around a Gulls defensive wall as Remi Elie recovers from a tumble during an offensive push. In the third shot Stephen Johns puts a solid hit on an opponent behind the Stars' net.

Full image gallery from Saturday is here.

3 Shots of the Game - Stars vs Wolves

The Texas Stars had a busy weekend, taking on the Chicago Wolves in back to back games Friday and Saturday. It was great series for the Stars as they dominated the Wolves in both games and came away with solid wins in each game. 

Friday's game was a 3-1 win for the Stars. Philippe Desrosiers was in net for the Stars for both games and he put on an incredible performance on Friday in particular. It was close to being a shutout until a late 3rd period goal by the Wolves. The first shot below is Remi Elie putting a walloping hit on an opponent. The second shot is Esa Lindell giving Desrosiers some defensive help in a battle for the puck in front of the Stars' net. The third shot is a breakaway scoring attempt by Curtis McKenzie, coming in hot in a face to face challenge with the Wolves' netminder.

Full image gallery from Friday's game is here.

The Stars enjoyed a 5-2 win in Saturday's matchup in front of a packed house at the Cedar Park Center. The first shot below is thwarted scoring chance by the Wolves in the first period. Good defense and solid goaltending kept the Wolves at bay. The second shot is a fierce 2 on 1 battle for puck possession in the Stars' zone. Matej Stransky and Julius Honka teamed up to stop a scoring attempt. The third shot is a second period goal by the Stars as seen from the mezzanine level. If you look closely you can see the puck entering the net below the goalie's glove hand.

Full image gallery from Saturday's game is here.

3 Shots of the Game - Stars vs Checkers/Heat

It was a double header weekend for the Texas Stars as the team took on the Charlotte Checkers Friday and the Stockton Heat Saturday. The Stars have struggled to pull out of a rut and they managed to come out of the weekend with 3 points - taking an overtime loss to the Checkers and a huge win over the Heat.

The Heat took a commanding lead in the first period of Friday's game and Stars' goalie Jack Campbell was pulled after 3 goals were allowed. Campbell would come back to the game for the second and third periods. The first shot above is Campbell taking a puck right into the Stars' logo on his jersey. The Stars put quite a few shots on the Heat net and managed to tie up the game. The second shot is a scoring attempt by Justin Dowling that was handled by goaltender. The third shot is Radek Faksa creating some traffic in front of the net. His jersey is blood stained from an injury in the first period.

Full image gallery from Friday's game is here.

The Stars earned a 5-2 win against the Heat in Saturday's game. John Muse was in net for the Stars and the first shot is Muse gloving a puck in one of many fantastic saves in the game. The second shot is another Heat shot on goal with Muse getting some help from his teammates. The players always know where the puck is - can you find it? The third shot is a fierce third period attack on the Heat's net by Derek Hulak and Brett Ritchie. Ritchie earned a hat trick with 3 goals, including an open netter.

Full image gallery from Saturday's game is here.