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Turek stops first 18 shots as peaking Blues devour Dallas for 2-0 lead

Retooling, rise of the Roman army

Posted: Monday, April 30, 2001

DALLAS -- The St. Louis Blues are no longer the same team that was so dominating early this season. They might be better.

Scott Young scored a short-handed goal, Marty Reasoner tapped in another goal and Roman Turek stopped Dallas' first 28 shots as the Blues beat the Stars 2-1 Sunday night to take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven, second-round series.

Having overcome injuries to key players and blended in some newcomers, St. Louis has dominated both games against Dallas and has a four-game playoff winning streak.

Now the Blues are headed home two victories away from reaching the conference finals for the first time since 1986. If they win Game 3 Tuesday night, they could close out Dallas, the two-time Western Conference champs, on Thursday night.

''Getting two on the road, in this building, is something I think we should feel pretty good about,'' St. Louis coach Joel Quenneville said.

The Blues scored on their first and third shots, then protected the lead until Joe Nieuwendyk scored with 52 seconds left.

The Stars, playing without leading postseason scorer Mike Modano, who has a sprained ankle, got off more shots at Turek in the first 15 minutes than in two periods of the opener. They didn't pressure him much in the second period and he narrowly missed his first career postseason shutout.

''It would've been nice,'' said Turek, who improved to 5-0-2 against his former team. ''But the win tonight and in both games, it's an unbelievable feeling. We just have to continue to play the same type of hockey.''

St. Louis isn't making many mistakes while capitalizing on the ones Dallas makes. Stars defenseman Darryl Sydor, who helped set up two Blues goals in the opener, committed the turnover that led to the first goal of this game and a misplay by Dallas goalie Ed Belfour made it 2-0 midway through the first period.

''You can say we've given them five goals,'' Stars captain Derian Hatcher said. ''They had to make plays to get them, but we helped.''

Modano is listed as day-to-day and could be back Tuesday. Dallas also is concerned about center Shaun Van Allen, who left after taking a puck to his mouth in the first period, and forward John MacLean, cut his face in the third.

Health and history is on St. Louis' side.

The Blues have won all nine series when winning the first two games, while the Stars haven't come back from an 0-2 deficit since 1968 in the franchise's first-ever postseason series.

''It's a big hole,'' Dallas coach Ken Hitchcock said. ''But if we can bring the same effort in Game 3, we give ourselves a hell of a chance to win. But it's got to be the same or better.''

St. Louis has yet to trail this series. They have led after every period and have been up by two goals for about 85 of the 120 minutes.

''We have nothing to be satisfied about,'' Quenneville said. ''We want them to know, hey, it's not going to get any easier.''

Reasoner, the surprise hero of Game 1 with two goals and an assist, scored easily 85 seconds into this game after Keith Tkachuk took the puck from Sydor and forced Belfour out of position.

Belfour was out of position again on Young's goal midway through the first period, but this time it was his own fault.

Having overplayed Young's rush to his left, Belfour was slow to set himself when Young -- St. Louis' leading goal-scorer this season -- skated around the net and fired. The shot went in off Belfour's leg.

Belfour bounced back, though, making some spectacular saves in snuffing the Blues' next 21 shots.

The game was much more physical than the opener, putting lots of blood on the ice.

Van Allen was hurt when he blocked a shot by Al MacInnis with his stick and it ricocheted into his mouth.

St. Louis defenseman Bryce Salvador didn't return after cutting his head against the boards on a check by Dallas' Benoit Hogue. No penalty was called.

MacLean took a high stick in the face from MacInnis, which earned him a double minor.

The Stars took only one shot on that power play and failed to score with the man advantage for the fifth straight game. They had six chances and have failed on their last 25 tries.

St. Louis hasn't given up a power-play goal in 34 tries over eight playoff games, tying the NHL's second-best streak since expansion.

Notes: Just 1:08 into the third period, officials stopped play and ordered the Zamboni back out to clean a section of the ice in the Dallas zone. ... The only other time St. Louis has opened a series with two road wins was in 1993, against Chicago in the first round. ... A Blues sweep would make this the last hockey game at Reunion Arena.



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