Predators beaten by Stars
DALLAS — Erik Cole scored two goals in the second period when Dallas snapped a tie, and the Stars went on to beat the Nashville Predators 4-1 on Friday night.
Cole has scored in his last three games against Nashville, including three in two games this season.
Dallas (19-12-6) is 4-0-1 in its last five games and 5-1-1 since a 3-1 loss at Nashville on Dec. 12.
The Predators (16-18-4) are 1-4-1 since then and are winless in their last five games. They have allowed 21 goals in those five games.
Jamie Benn scored on Dallas’ first shot, a wraparound just 42 seconds into the game. Antoine Roussel missed a penalty shot at 16:35 of the first period.
Nashville tied it on Kevin Klein’s first goal this season at 7:14 of the second. The defenseman skated down the slot and knocked Colin Wilson’s centering pass from low in the left circle past goalie Kari Lehtonen at 7:14.
Just 24 seconds later, Cole sent a drive from the right circle into the near corner of the net for a 2-1 lead. Rich Peverley’s backhanded pass from the goal line set up Cole.
On his second goal, Cole skated in hard at Hutton, then stopped abruptly. The goalie spread-eagled across the net, but Cole fitted the puck between Hutton’s left skate and the right post.
Ryan Garbutt tipped in a shot at 4:09 of the third for Dallas’ final goal.
Lehtonen made 33 saves, and Hutton finished with 30. Nashville had changed goalies in its three previous games.
Benn beat Hutton after skating behind the net. Hutton was late getting across, seemingly more concerned with Tyler Seguin on the left side.
Dallas had a chance for a two-goal lead at 16:35 of the first period. Roussel was awarded a penalty shot when he was pulled down after taking a pass at the blue line and splitting two defenders.
It was Roussel’s second penalty shot this season. He scored the winning goal in a 4-3 victory at Chicago on Dec. 3.
Nashville outshot the Stars 9-7 in the first, but Dallas also missed seven shots to the Predators’ three.