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Previous Game: Ducks Get Out in Front Early, But Have to Hang On for 4-3 Victory

Thursday, 04.17.2014 / 9:00 AM PT / News
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Previous Game: Ducks Get Out in Front Early, But Have to Hang On for 4-3 Victory
ANAHEIM – The Ducks have had a flair for the dramatic this season, but tonight they gave their fans as much as they could handle in a 4-3 victory over the Stars in Game 1.

Despite getting off to a roaring start, the Ducks had to hang on for dear life to survive and take a 1-0 series lead. Anaheim led the game 4-0 midway through the second and looked primed to run away it, but the Stars clawed back to within a goal before the Ducks hung on over a tense final six minutes. That came much to the relief of a mostly orange-clad overflow crowd of 17,294 at Honda Center.

The Ducks handed out orange t-shirts and rally towels to each of the fans in attendance, lending to the Paint It Orange theme of this postseason, and the playoff-time energy in the building could be felt at the outset.The Ducks appeared to feed off it in the first 30 minutes of the game, but they let their foot off the gas in the second and third before clamping down over the final stretch.

They paid for it, however, as Ryan Getzlaf took a slapshot off his face with 16.3 seconds left in the game and the Dallas net empty. He headed straight for the locker room, and Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said afterward, "I just know he’s getting stitched up right now. That’s the only thing I’ve heard. I think he’s going to be okay, but he’ll probably have a nasty cut on the side of his mouth. I’ll know more tomorrow or later tonight."

The Ducks also lost Matt Beleskey to a lower-body injury in the third period, and he did not return, though Boudreau said he hopes he plays on Friday.

Of the team's hot start, winger Corey Perry said, "It was just us excited being back on the big stage. Everybody wants to play, and everybody wants to win. You’re going to have ups and downs in the playoffs, but if you can keep an even keel, you’re going to be all right."

The Ducks got on the board early in this one, as Kyle Palmieri took in a feed from Nick Bonino and backhanded it under goalie Kari Lehtonen less than two minutes after the opening faceoff. It was the fourth goal (and sixth point) in the last six postseason games for Palmieri.

Anaheim made it 2-0 with 7:11 left in the first when Beleskey wristed a shot from the left wing that caromed off Lehtonen, and Getzlaf chipped in the rebound.

The first of two power-play goals came with 29.7 seconds left in the period, as Patrick Maroon made a pretty cross-ice feed to Mathieu Perreault, who hammered it home.

It was more of the same for the first half of the second, as the Ducks cashed in again on the power play when Francois Beauchemin rifled a slap shot from the point that deflected in off the right knee of Beleskey. It marked the first time the Ducks had multiple power-play goals since they had six on January 15 vs. Vancouver.

But Dallas came to life late in the second after two Ducks penalties (the latter a too many men on the ice call) led to a 5-on-3 for the Stars. And they took advantage, as an Alex Chiasson shot from the left circle kicked off Andersen and Jamie Benn punched it into the open net.

Not long after, though back at full strength, Anaheim gave up a second Dallas goal as Colton Sceviour fired from the right circle under Andersen, who may have been screened by Beauchemin.

"A little adversity isn’t going to hurt us," Perry said. "We’ve got to learn how to play with the lead, especially down to the wire. All those things are going to help us."

Dallas ultimately pulled to within a goal with 6:07 left in regulation as Tyler Seguin redirected a Trevor Daley pass inside the left post. But that was it for the Stars, as the Anaheim defense and Andersen (32 saves) shut them down the rest of the way.

"We let up a little bit in the third after our fourth goal, so this is a good lesson for us," Andersen said. "Hopefully we can prevent that from happening again."

Game 2 between these two teams is Friday night at Honda Center.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - DAL 82 50 23 9 267 230 109
2 x - STL 82 49 24 9 224 201 107
3 x - CHI 82 47 26 9 235 209 103
4 y - ANA 82 46 25 11 218 192 103
5 x - LAK 82 48 28 6 225 195 102
6 x - SJS 82 46 30 6 241 210 98
7 x - NSH 82 41 27 14 228 215 96
8 x - MIN 82 38 33 11 216 206 87
9 COL 82 39 39 4 216 240 82
10 ARI 82 35 39 8 209 245 78
11 WPG 82 35 39 8 215 239 78
12 CGY 82 35 40 7 231 260 77
13 VAN 82 31 38 13 191 243 75
14 EDM 82 31 43 8 203 245 70

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Getzlaf 77 13 50 14 63
C. Perry 82 34 28 2 62
R. Kesler 79 21 32 5 53
R. Rakell 72 20 23 -1 43
J. Silfverberg 82 20 19 8 39
S. Vatanen 71 9 29 8 38
A. Cogliano 82 9 23 2 32
H. Lindholm 80 10 18 7 28
C. Fowler 69 5 23 -8 28
C. Stewart 56 8 12 2 20
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Gibson 21 13 4 .920 2.07
A. Khudobin 3 3 0 .909 2.70

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