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Stars Take 3-1 Series Lead With Game 4 Win

Evgenii Dadonov #63 of the Dallas Stars celebrates a goal in the third period during Game Four of the Second Round of the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs. | Image by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images
Evgenii Dadonov #63 of the Dallas Stars celebrates a goal in the third period during Game Four of the Second Round of the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs. | Image by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

The Dallas Stars defeated the Colorado Avalanche 5-1 on Monday night to take a 3-1 series lead as the teams prepare for what could be the final game of the series on Wednesday night.

The Stars got out to a lead in the first period of the game and never looked back, growing their lead to as many as three goals in the second period before cruising to victory.

Both teams opened the game with strong defense, combining for just four total shots on goal in the first eight minutes of action.

Dallas got their first opportunity on a power play after Avalanche defenseman Caleb Jones was sent to the penalty box after tripping right wing Logan Stankoven.

Avalanche goalie Alexandar Georgiev kept all five shots on goal from getting past him during the Stars’ advantage.

The two teams remained aggressive following the power play, but Stankoven got hit with his own penalty after hooking Colorado defenseman Samuel Girard.

Despite the Avalanche having an additional man on the ice, Stars center Wyatt Johnston sent the puck past Georgiev off an assist from center Sam Steel to give Dallas a 1-0 lead with 4:23 left in the period.

Dallas finished the first 20 minutes with a 1-0 lead as they went on the offensive, taking 15 shots on goal during the period, while the Avalanche managed to take just two.

The second period opened with the two teams playing four-on-four after Avalanche defenseman Josh Manson and Stars left wing ​​Jamie Benn each received a penalty at the end of the first period, though neither team was able to capitalize on the opportunity.

The Stars had another chance for a power play just minutes later after Jones got hit with another penalty for hooking Stankoven.

Dallas took advantage during this power play, as Johnston sent the puck past Georgiev off assists from left wing Jason Robertson and defenseman Miro Heiskanen to extend their lead to 2-0 with 14:14 left in the second period.

This aggressive play continued over the next five minutes of action, culminating in another goal from the Stars as Heiskanen shot the puck past Georgiev to give them a 3-0 lead with 8:36 left in the period.

The Avalanche quickly struck back to cut the lead to just 3-1 with 7:25 left in the period off a goal from center Casey Mittelstadt.

The two teams played even throughout the remainder of the second period, as the Stars entered the final period with a 3-1 lead.

Colorado opened the final period of the game in attack mode as they took six shots on goal before the Stars were able to attempt one, though none of these attempts made it past Stars goalie Jake Oettinger.

Despite the Avalanche opening the final period attacking Oettinger, the Stars were first to score as right-wing Evgenii Dadonov scored off assists from Heiskanen and left-wing Mason Marchment, giving Dallas a 4-1 lead with 10:33 left in the game.

The Stars spent the rest of the period with a focus on defense, as they prevented Colorado from scoring for the remainder of the game.

Although the Avalanche were unable to secure another goal, Dallas center Sam Steel sent the puck into an empty Colorado net off an assist from Johnston with 1:50 remaining in the game to extend their lead to 5-1.

The Stars now lead the Avalanche 3-1 in the series as the teams travel back to Dallas for Game 5 in the American Airlines Center on Wednesday at 7:00 p.m.

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