Gostisbehere scores 2, Flyers beat Stars 2-1
PHILADELPHIA (AP) Shayne Gostisbehere and the streaking Flyers are full of confidence, and it’s showing.
Gostisbehere scored twice, including the game-winner 3:50 into overtime, to lead Philadelphia to its sixth straight victory, 2-1 over the Dallas Stars on Saturday night.
Brian Elliott made 26 saves and Jakub Voracek had two assists for the Flyers, whose winning streak has followed a 10-game skid.
”It’s confidence, swagger, whatever you want to attach to it, is a big part of this game,” Flyers coach Dave Hakstol said. ”When you’re going good, you have that mentality that you’re not going to take less than finding a way to win a game. When you’re on the other end of close losses, tight losses, it starts to wear on you.”
Gostisbehere scored the winner on the power play after Alexander Radulov was called for hooking. The defenseman’s wrist shot through traffic got past Stars goalie Ben Bishop as Wayne Simmonds provided a screen. Officials reviewed the goal to determine whether Simmonds interfered with Bishop, but the goal was confirmed by the replay.
”I think we are just feeding off of each other, finding lanes, and we were just relentless,” Gostisbehere said. ”I think the goal at the end showed how we weren’t giving up there.”
Gostisbehere upped his goal total to six and points mark to 24 in 29 games, and his play of late has impressed his coach.
”When he’s moving and skating and able to be in attack mode and do it confidently, that’s a real element for our team,” Hakstol said. ”It injects confidence into our team and can put an opponent, whether it’s putting them back on their heels, for sure it’s putting them in their defensive zone and making them defend.”
Gemel Smith scored for Dallas, which ended a four-game road trip 2-1-1. Stars coach Ken Hitchcock was denied his 800th career victory for the second straight game. Hitchcock is vying to become the third NHL coach to reach the milestone.
Hitchock was perturbed with Radulov’s penalty. It was one of two penalties called on the Stars winger, who also was cited for high-sticking 8 1/2 minutes into the third.
”To fight like we fought and battle, it’s really disappointing to see him take two penalties like that at the end of the game,” Hitchcock said.
Radulov took responsibility for his undisciplined play.
”I got a little too emotional,” he said. ”Sometimes you get elbowed in the face and you don’t get a call and you get frustrated. I took stupid penalties. It’s on me. I need to work on my emotion and be better.”
Hitchcock also called out his leading players, ostensibly captain Jamie Benn and Tyler Seguin. The duo entered tied for the team lead with 29 points, but both were held without a point. Seguin now has gone seven games without a goal.
”Our role players were outstanding; they’re doing their job,” Hitchcock said. ”We need the impact players to get up another gear. We’re not going to get any better until our impact players have a strong, positive impact on the game on a consistent basis. We can’t continue to have the role players on the hockey club carry the hockey club.”
Voracek, who entered tied for the NHL lead with 31 assists, has 10 helpers during the winning streak.
Bishop returned to the net after backup Kari Lehtonen played the last three games and finished with 28 saves.
Gostisbehere tied it at 1 with 10:50 left in the second period on the power play after arguably one of the Flyers’ best shifts of the season. Philadelphia peppered Bishop with shots during the shift, and Gostisbehere finally broke through with his fifth of the season. Voracek’s initial shot from the point went wide, but Gostisbehere hustled to the rebound off the boards and dived as he shot off Bishop’s left arm and in.
Smith put the Stars on top after a nifty, backhanded feed from Remi Elie that Smith finished with a wrister past Elliott’s blocker side.
Philadelphia hasn’t allowed more than two goals in a game during its winning streak while outscoring opponents 21-9. Elliott has been in net for every contest during the streak.
NOTES: The teams will wrap up their two-game regular-season series on March 27 in Dallas. … Hitchcock recorded 131 of his wins while leading the Flyers for three-plus seasons from 2002-2006. Hall of Famer Scotty Bowman (1,244 wins) and Blackhawks coach Joel Queenneville (866) are the others who have eclipsed 800. . Bishop fell to 13-10. . Philadelphia is the third team in NHL history to follow a 10-game skid with a winning streak of six or more games, joining the 2005-06 Sharks and 1966-67 Maple Leafs. . Philadelphia improved to 2-7 in overtime while the Stars fell to 4-2.
Stars: Return home for the first of three straight at home on Tuesday night against Washington.
Flyers: Play the fourth of a five-game homestand Monday night against Los Angeles.