Scheifele scores twice, Jets hold off Stars 4-3
DALLAS (AP) Mark Scheifele has hurt the Dallas Stars even more than the other teams in the Central Division.
Scheifele scored two more goals against Dallas and narrowly missed two others, propelling the Winnipeg Jets to a 4-3 victory Thursday night.
At the other end, Jets goalie Ondrej Pavelec made a season-high 39 saves.
Scheifele has five goals in four games between the teams this season, with the Jets winning three. He has a seven-game point streak against the Stars, with seven goals and seven assists.
”When you’re playing against teams in your division, you’ve got to buckle down,” Scheifele said. ”They’re big points. Especially after the All-Star break, things ramp up.”
Dallas led 2-1 until Scheifele tied the game with 53 seconds left in the first period. He gave the Jets a 3-2 lead during a 5-on-3 power play 5:56 into the second.
The Stars just missed going ahead despite the two-man disadvantage. Jamie Benn, who had a goal and two assists, had a short-handed breakaway.
”Goalie made a good save, and then (I) kind of made a mistake in the defensive end and they put it in the back of the net,” Benn said.
Just 23 seconds later, Scheifele scored from the inside edge of the right faceoff circle.
”Go back a year and a half ago, the number of posts that (Scheifele) hit as a young guy,” Winnipeg coach Paul Maurice said. ”He’s got a little more poise with that puck and he’s placing it better.”
Bryan Little gave Winnipeg a 1-0 lead 6:50 into the game. John Klingberg and Benn scored for Dallas barely two minutes apart midway through the first period.
The Stars put a season-high 42 shots on goal.
Pavelec had not faced more than 37 this season. He stopped all 14 shots in a scoreless third period.
”Some high-end ones, too, on high-end shooters,” Maurice said. ”The ones he could see and then a few that he didn’t see until late. He was just tracking the puck so well. Best player on the ice.
”Might be the best performance I’ve ever seen by a goaltender while I’ve been behind the bench.”
Pavelec’s teammates blocked 29 Dallas shots, including eight by Toby Enstrom. The Stars had 83 shot attempts to 43 for Winnipeg.
Kari Lehtonen made 25 saves for the Stars, but gave up the puck behind the net and didn’t skate back around in time to stop Nikolaj Ehlers’ shot for the Jets’ final goal at 12:51 of the second period.
Patrick Eaves scored at 17:58 of the second to pull the Stars to 4-3.
Winnipeg has won a season-high three consecutive games, all on the road. The Jets had nine two-game winning streaks before that.
The Stars also entered on a two-game win streak. The loss left them two points behind Winnipeg, with both teams fighting to climb into playoff position in the Western Conference.
Klingberg and Eaves each had a goal and an assist.
Ehlers had an assist to go with his goal for the Jets.
For his first goal, Scheifele had the left side of the net open for his first goal when Blake Wheeler passed cross-ice.
Scheifele nearly had two other goals in the second. Dallas challenged his apparent goal from the top of the slot at 4:36 and won the review because Wheeler was offside. Lehtonen turned aside another shot when Scheifele skated in on the goalie later in the period.
NOTES: The Jets were 0-7-2 in their earlier attempts to win a third straight game this season. … Little tied his career best with a seven-game point streak. He has seven goals and four assists during that span. … Eaves’ goal was his 19th, one short of the career high he set in his rookie season of 2005-06 for Ottawa. … Dallas C Jason Spezza left in the third period after taking a hit from Jets C Adam Lowry. Spezza is going to miss some time, and it’s ”probably more than days,” Stars coach Lindy Ruff said. … Dallas’ longest winning streak this season is three games.
Jets: Play the finale of a four-game trip Saturday at Colorado.
Stars: Finish a six-game homestand Saturday vs. Chicago.