Eberle finishes 2012 with natural hat trick


(texasstarshockey.com) — Jordan Eberle scored a natural hat trick in a span of less than three minutes late in the first period and he later added an assist to lead the Oklahoma City Barons to a 5-2 win over the Texas Stars Monday night at Cox Convention Center.

The Stars controlled the play early on as they out-shot the Barons 11-3 in the first 15 minutes of the game. Momentum took an abrupt and dramatic shift when Eberle scored at 15:44 to give Oklahoma City a 1-0 lead.

Nine seconds later Eberle found the net again as he snapped a wrist shot over the glove of Cristopher Nilstorp for his second goal of the night.

The AHL’s leading goal-scorer completed a natural hat trick at 18:27, scoring his 23rd goal of year on the power play. Eberle’s three goals in the span of 2:43 gave the Barons a commanding lead, even though Texas led in shots 12-7 after the first period.

The Stars got on the board 7:11 into the second frame when Colton Sceviour collected a loose rebound from a Maxime Fortunus shot and backhanded the puck into the net. The goal, assisted by Fortunus and Travis Morin, was Sceviour’s ninth of the season.

Less than two minutes later Justin Schultz regained Oklahoma City’s three-goal with a power-play goal on a wrist shot from the high slot with traffic in front at 9:07.

Texas equaled a season-high with 21 shots on goal in the middle period, only allowing nine shots from the Barons, but they trailed 4-1 after 40 minutes.

A mere 28 seconds into the third period Morin set a beautiful cross-ice pass to Matt Fraser for a blistering one-timer into the net and a power-play goal. Fraser’s team-leading 12th goal of the year, also assisted by Brenden Dillon, cut the hosts’ lead to 4-2.

Barons goalie Yann Danis kept Texas at bay throughout the final period and in the closing seconds Josh Green added an empty-net goal to close out a 5-2 win for Oklahoma City.

Danis finished the game with 42 saves on 44 shots to earn his 13th win of the season, while Nilstorp had 22 saves on 26 shots in the loss for Texas. The Stars out-shot Oklahoma City 44-27 in the game and went 1-for-6 on the power play; the Barons were 2-for-2 with the man advantage.