Monsters, Stars Go Back-to-Back

MATCHUP
Following a 7-1 win over Milwaukee to start their eight-game homestand, the Lake Erie Monsters (25-20-2-6) welcome in the Western Conference-leading Texas Stars (31-13-4-4) for a pair of games- both 7:30 PM start times- tonight and tomorrow night at Quicken Loans Arena. The Monsters snapped an eight-game winless skid with their runaway victory over the Admirals last night, while Texas enters the weekend on a 4-0-0-1 streak. Texas also carries a 17-7-2-1 record away from home.

LAST TIME OUT
The Monsters’ seven goals Thursday were the most they have scored in a game this season, and the most in any game since their team-record eight goals in an 8-4 win on April 1, 2012; Calvin Pickard’s first professional start, and a Monsters road win over the Texas Stars. David van der Gulik and Bill Thomas matched van der Gulik’s previously-set season-best four points in a game Thursday night; van der Gulik scored twice and chipped in two assists, while Thomas opened the scoring and assisted on three additional Monsters goals. Also with multi-point games and helping Calvin Pickard collect his 14th victory were Paul Carey (Two assists), and Luke Walker (Goal, Assist). Thirteen different Monsters registered points in the game.

WHO TO WATCH: MONSTERS
van der Gulik’s usual hard work and textbook fundamental play led to his second four-point game of the season; a feat he previously accomplished on 12/19/12 vs. Toronto. He put together the Monsters 11th two-goal game of the season, and the Monsters were jumpstarted by his relentless work in puck battles along the boards.

WHO TO WATCH: TEXAS
Jack Campbell has won his last three starts in net for Texas, allowing just four goals over the last three games. Adding meaning to the matchup with the Monsters and a potential matchup with Monsters goalie Calvin Pickard is the fact that Campbell was the first goalie selected in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft (Dallas Stars/11th overall), while Pickard was the third goalie taken in the same draft (Colorado Avalanche/49th overall). Campbell is on a win streak as of late, but against the Monsters this season he is 0-1-0 with a 3.60 goals against average, while Pickard has won each of his starts against Texas this season.

TUNE IN
Friday and Saturday’s games, live from Quicken Loans Arena, can be heard live on ESPN 850 WKNR beginning at 7:30 PM with Doug Plagens on the play-by-play.


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