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Sharp scores twice as Chicago tops Dallas

Mar 17, 2012 - 5:20 AM
Dallas, TX (Sports Network) - Patrick Sharp netted two goals as the Chicago Blackhawks topped the Dallas Stars, 4-1, at American Airlines Center on Friday.

Dave Bolland and Marian Hossa lit the lamp and Viktor Stalberg added two assists for the Blackhawks, who have won three of their last four games. Corey Crawford made 20 saves in the victory.

Chicago now has 86 points and remains in sixth place in the Western Conference, four points behind the idle Nashville Predators for the fifth spot.

Jamie Benn scored the only goal for Dallas, which has dropped two straight since winning six in a row. Kari Lehtonen was tagged for all four goals on 31 shots in the loss.

With 83 points, the Stars stay atop the Pacific Division, two points ahead of idle Phoenix.

Chicago took the lead right off the opening faceoff, finding the back of the net just 10 seconds into the game.

Bolland won the opening draw back to Brent Seabrook, who sent a bank-pass up the left wing wall, sending Andrew Shaw into the offensive zone with speed. Shaw worked his way to the slot and dropped it to Bolland, who fired a wrist shot high to the blocker side past a screened Lehtonen.

The Blackhawks struck again just 1:32 later when Sharp came away with the puck after a battle in the left corner and curled to the left circle before ripping a wrister home.

"We got two quick ones in the first, and it seems like we start every period like that," Sharp said. "We're not always going to score like we did, but as long as we're doing the right things, the game turns in our favor."

After a scoreless middle stanza, the Blackhawks made it 3-0 just 33 seconds into the third period as a result of a poor turnover in the defensive zone by Dallas.

Holding the puck along the wall, Stars forward Vernon Fiddler sent a breakout pass right up the middle of the ice that was easily intercepted by Patrick Kane, who dropped it to Hossa, who fired a slap shot from the right point that beat Lehtonen low to the stick side.

Sharp got his second goal of the night at 1:45 of the final period after Dallas defenseman Adam Pardy threw a pass to neutral ice that was knocked down by Stalberg, sending the 'Hawks the other way. Stalberg quickly fed Sharp, who ripped a wrist shot high past Lehtonen to make it 4-0.

Benn finally got the Stars on the board at 14:10 of the final period after he slid one through the legs of Crawford from in close off a nice feed from Steve Ott, but it was too little. too late.

"You can't start a game like that," Benn said. "We put ourselves in a hole 3-4 minutes in and you never want to do that against a good team like Chicago."

Game Notes

Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews missed his 12th straight game due to concussion symptoms...Dallas fell to 10-2-1 over its last 13 games...Lehtonen fell to 8-1-1 over his last 10 starts...Crawford improved to 3-4-0 in eight career appearances against the Stars...The Blackhawks went 0- for-4 with the man advantage, while the Stars did not have any...Dallas Mavericks forward Lamar Odom and wife Khloe Kardashian attended the game.