Avalanche rally, beat Stars in shootout

Ryan O’Reilly scored on the first shot of a shootout, and it was enough for the Colorado Avalanche to beat the Dallas Stars 5-4 on Friday night.

Colorado’s Semyon Varlamov stopped all three Stars shots in the shootout after O’Reilly lifted the puck over Dallas’ Kari Lehtonen and in off the crossbar.

The teams began the night tied for sixth place in the Central Division with 63 points each, but out of playoff position. Colorado won all five games between the teams.

Nate Guenin had a career-high three points with a goal and two assists for the Avalanche. They rallied from deficits of 3-1 and 4-3 in the third period.

Cody Eakin had two goals and an assist, but the Stars lost their fifth straight game (0-3-2) They also were 0-3-2 against Colorado this season.

For Colorado, Tyson Barrie also had a goal and two assists. Gabriel Landeskog had one of each, Matt Duchene assisted twice and Jarome Iginla scored a goal.

It was Eakin’s second two-goal game this season. Jason Spezza and Antoine Roussel also scored for Dallas.

Dallas outshot the Avalanche 36-23. Varlamov made 32 saves; Lehtonen had 19.

In 155 prior NHL games, Guenin had more than one point only on March 31, 2007. He scored his second goal this season and fifth of his career during Colorado’s three-goal third period.

Eakin scored 2:45 into the second period on a slap shot after taking a pass from Ryan Garbutt above the right faceoff circle. The puck went past Varlamov’s left shoulder.

Duchene dropped a pass to Barrie at the top of the right circle, and he shot past Lehtonen to tie it. The 1-1 score lasted just 29 seconds until Spezza put in the rebound of Erik Cole’s short shot.

After Eakin’s goal at 3:05 of the third, Iginla and Guenin scored to tie the game 3-3.

Roussel’s goal gave Dallas the lead again, but Landeskog tipped in Barrie’s shot with 6:43 to play in regulation.

NOTES: Guenin’s career scoring totals: five goals, 20 assists, 25 points. . The Avalanche are 8-4 in shootouts, Dallas 2-3. . Duchene’s assists gave him seven points (two goals, five assists) in the five games against Dallas this season and 26 points (10, 16) in 24 career games vs. the Stars. . Spezza has 23 points (8, 15) in his last 20 games and eight points (4, 4) in the seven games since teammate Tyler Seguin was injured. . Dallas captain Jamie Benn’s eight-game point streak ended.