Work in Sports
Joe gives Stars a jolt
Nieuwendyk nets two goals as Dallas takes 3-1 series lead
Posted: Saturday May 06, 2000 02:14 AM
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) --It didn't matter that Dallas got caught up in an out-of-character offensive free-for-all. When it was over, the Stars had regained their playoff momentum.
Joe Nieuwendyk had two goals, including the go-ahead score, and Dallas added two short-handed goals in a 5-4 victory over the San Jose Sharks on Friday night. The nine goals were one more than the teams' total output in three previous games.
"It was a crazy game," said Niewendyk. "We gave up too many opportunities to them, but we're happy with the output on the other end. We got away with one, but we're going to have to tighten up when we go home."
The defending Stanley Cup champions took a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven Western Conference semifinals. The Stars can clinch the series with a victory against San Jose in Game 5 at Dallas on Sunday.
"It's a great opportunity for us to go in front of our home fans and put the hammer down," Nieuwendyk said. "We don't want to come back here."
Both San Jose goalie Steve Shields and Dallas goalie Ed Belfour, who had kept a lid on scoring in their previous games, struggled in this one.
There were three short-handed goals, two by Dallas, and San Jose converted twice on the power play. A frustrated Belfour drew successive roughing penalties around a goaltender interference call on Dave Lowry in the final period, but withstood the resulting San Jose power play.
"This was desperate hockey by both sides," said Dallas' Kirk Muller. "There were mistakes here and there and we both capitalized. It was a game of mistakes and we just tried to minimize them."
San Jose pulled Shields in the final minute for an extra attacker, but Belfour stuffed Patrick Marleau's shot from up close with 40 seconds remaining. Dallas prevented the Sharks from getting another shot.
"We had our opportunities," said Mike Ricci, who had a goal for San Jose. "We had enough goals to win. We didn't play well defensively."
Belfour had allowed only two goals in three previous games, twice shutting out the Sharks. Shields, who stopped 28 of 33 shots, had given up only two goals in the previous two games since a 4-0 loss in the series opener.
"This was definitely an opportunity to beat them, but we just didn't step up," San Jose's Jeff Norton said.
Nieuwendyk's first goal, off a rebound that Shields just missed overing up, gave the Stars a 4-3 lead before the game was tied for a fourth time on Todd Harvey's power-play goal from the slot after a centering pass by Marleau at 14:07 of the second.
Nieuwendyk then scored again, putting the Stars up by a goal heading into the final period.
"We hung in there," Muller added. "They're a tough team to play against. They're going to battle. We're fully aware of that. We knew it would come down to the wire."
Jamie Langenbrunner, who missed Game 3 with a bruised shoulder, got a pass from Scott Thornton and rushed down the ice. He drew Shields to cover one side of the net before getting off a feed to the wide-open Nieuwendyk on the other side for the go-ahead score, his third of the playoffs.
Owen Nolan forged a 3-3 tie when he answered Dallas' second short-handed score with one for the Sharks. He took the puck away from Derian Hatcher at the blue line and broke for the Dallas net, where he flipped the puck over Belfour's shoulder for his eighth goal of the playoffs.
Sergei Zubov had put Dallas up 3-2 with a short-handed score, getting a lead pass from Mike Modano and beating Shields with a shot on the goalie's stick side.
The teams, who combined for four goals in their two previous games, scored two each in the first period alone.
A Stars turnover led to Ricci's fifth goal of the playoffs, which tied it 2-2. Zubov was skating behind the net attempting to clear the puck when Marco Sturm knocked it away. It bounded out to Niklas Sundstrom and he quickly dished to Ricci, who tapped the puck in from just outside the crease.
The Stars had gone in front on a short-handed breakaway just 1 1/2 minutes after San Jose converted on a two-man advantage on Vincent Damphousse's first goal of the playoffs.
Mike Keane picked up a loose puck in the Dallas zone and took off down the left side of the rink. Sharks defenseman Bryan Marchment had the angle, but appeared to cramp up as he gave chase and couldn't catch him. Keane got off a cross-ice pass to the streaking Guy Carbonneau, who finished the breakaway by beating Shields.
Marchment left the game with a groin strain.
Modano scored 1:08 into the game, stretching his career-high points streak to eight games. Brenden Morrow won a scrum along the boards and got the puck out to Brett Hull, who passed it on to Modano for a shot from the point that slid beneath Shields' legs.