(sarampage.com) — The National Hockey League made its return to San Antonio on Friday night, as 7,762 fans watched the Dallas Stars skate to a 4-1 victory over the Rampage’s parent club, the Florida Panthers, in the first NHL game held in the 11-year history of the AT&T Center.
Friday’s game marked the third NHL preseason game played in San Antonio. The Dallas Stars faced off against the Los Angeles Kings in back-to-back seasons (1994-95) at the Alamodome.
Dallas forward Antoine Roussel tallied two goals and an assist in the Stars victory. Chris Mueller also picked up a goal and an assist for the Stars. The lone Panthers goal was scored by defenseman Tom Gilbert.
Roussel opened the scoring for the Stars at 4:25 of the first period when he tipped in a point shot from defenseman Trevor Daley. Panthers defenseman Alex Petrovic, who played in 55 games with the Rampage last season, had the best opportunity to knot the game, but rang a shot off the left post with just over a minute left to play in the first period.
Roussel gave the Stars a two-goal lead only 45 seconds into the second period with Mueller and Patrik Nemeth collecting assists. Panthers goaltender Michael Houser made a strong glove save on forward Colton Sceviour with 3:20 left in the period to keep it a two-goal game.
But Sceviour, the Texas Stars’ all-time leader in games played (294), got his revenge and gave Dallas a 3-0 lead at 2:37 of the third period while on the power play. Gilbert answered with a power-play goal for the Panthers only 1:06 later when he fired a wrist shot through traffic that snuck past Dallas goaltender Dan Ellis.
The Stars lit the lamp for the final time on the night at 14:10 after Mueller corralled a bouncing puck in the slot and wristed a shot past Houser.
Houser turned aside 24 shots on the night, while Ellis made 28 saves.