Flyers continue steady play; Stars look for improvement

Sports

The Philadelphia Flyers will look for their second win in as many nights when they visit the Dallas Stars on Saturday.

The Flyers fell behind 1-0 but rallied for an impressive 2-1 victory Friday on the road against the Carolina Hurricanes.

Joel Farabee and Zack MacEwen each scored one goal for the Flyers. Goaltender Carter Hart made 39 saves, including several stellar ones in the final few minutes.

“Our (penalty kill) was huge tonight,” Hart said during a postgame interview on NBC Sports Philadelphia. “I thought we did a really good job. Guys were laying out.”

The Flyers have some impressive wins on the road this season, most notably against the Edmonton Oilers and Hurricanes. While the Stars are struggling a bit, for the Flyers, Saturday’s matchup is just as important as Friday’s game with the Hurricanes.

“It was a big win for us” Hart said. “Gotta carry the momentum with us.”

Hart and Martin Jones have performed admirably without forward Kevin Hayes and defenseman Ryan Ellis in the lineup. Hayes (abdominal surgery) has yet to play, and Ellis has missed the past nine games with a lower-body injury. Both players are getting closer to returning.

“We’re sitting in a good spot, the team is playing well, so there’s not really a case to push it,” Ellis said. “But if it was the playoffs, I’ve played through a lot worse than this. It’s something that you want to be smart about and we’re not dealing with down the road.”

The Stars will hope to avoid a third consecutive loss when they battle the Flyers.

In their most recent game Wednesday, the Stars fell 4-2 to the Nashville Predators.

Defense and goaltending have been major issues for the Stars through this early stretch of the season.

“I don’t like being 23rd in goals against,” Stars coach Rick Bowness said. “That’s a team thing. You try to win 4-3 in this league every night, you’re out of the playoffs. It’s as simple as that. We have to tighten it up. We’ve got to be able to win 3-2, and it’s a combination of everything — it’s the penalty kill, it’s the D, it’s the goalies, it’s the forwards, it’s everything.”

Dallas clearly was frustrated after the two-goal loss to the Predators, as the players held a 30-minute, closed-door meeting following the game.

“I know exactly what’s wrong with this team, and we’re going to fix it,” Bowness said.

“We have a lot of leaders, a lot of veterans in there, and I’m sure they’ve been in situations, so everyone’s trusting each other right now, and that’s what we have to do,” forward Jason Robertson added.

The Stars have fallen behind early too often this season. It’s a trend they’ll want to reverse beginning with this game against the Flyers.

“We’re really chasing that first goal. I think that’s so important right now, getting that first goal,” Robertson said. “Every team plays better with a lead, right? And unfortunately, if you don’t get that, then we start to get a little desperate. Then unfortunately another mistake, it’s two then three.”

–Field Level Media

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