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Flyers, Led by Frost and Tippett, Dominate Stars, Win 5-1

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The Philadelphia Flyers, led by Morgan Frost’s two assists and Owen Tippett’s two goals, defeated the Dallas Stars, 5-1, at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, PA on Thursday night.

The Flyers jumped out to a 5-1 lead in shots on goal within the first seven minutes, thanks in large part to three consecutive offensive zone steals from Morgan Frost and some smart decisions with the puck from Jamie Drysdale. Frost and the Flyers continued their superb period for the full 20 minutes, culminating in a Frost no-look pass to send Sean Walker on a breakaway, which the veteran converted to give Philadelphia a 1-0 lead with just over a minute left in the first frame. The Stars were flat-out dominated by the hosts, as the Flyers outshot them 15-1 in the period.

“Yeah, it was actually I was yelling at Beezer, he was going back to the zone before me so I was playing wing there. We’ve talked about that all year,” Frost said of the goal. “I think it’s been a strong part of our game and good plays by those guys and then I could just, I kind of saw Walks out of the side of my eye and Beezer made a great play just try to get it to him.”

Tyson Foerster’s second period-opening high-sticking penalty seemed like the perfect opportunity for the Stars to crawl their way back into the game, but it was a momentum-killer, if anything. The Flyers’ stifling penalty kill was at it again, as Dallas went without a shot on goal during their power play. On the very next shift, Tippett scored his 17th of the season to double Philadelphia’s lead to 2-0. With his assist on the goal, Sean Couturier earned his 300th career assist in the NHL.

Jason Robertson’s slashing penalty gave the Flyers an early opportunity at a dagger, but came up short on the man advantage. Shots were 21-1 before the penalty, but Wyatt Johnston was able to get two short-handed chances against Sam Ersson. Fortunately, Philadelphia’s white-hot netminder shut the door on both.

Sam Steel took an untimely tripping penalty to give the Flyers’ power play units a mulligan, but they again came up short. Immediately after, Tyler Seguin scored to cut Philly’s lead in half with seven minutes to go. Despite the nice stretch they had last week, the power play is still objectively bad and will need to rapidly improve before the postseason.

With less than a minute to go, Thomas Harley took a high-sticking penalty to give the Flyers’ power play one last chance to get right and provide a spark. It didn’t work out that way before the clock ran out, with the period ending with an offensive zone pass that found nobody and flew out of the zone to kill the last few seconds.

Very early in the third period, though, the Flyers converted on the run-off power play with Cam Atkinson poking home a rebound from a Travis Sanheim blast at the far post. Frost earned his second assist of the evening on the goal, and despite going 26 games without a goal, Atkinson now finds himself with three in his his last three. Frost has two goals and five assists in the seven games since his benching against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Jan. 4.

The Flyers weren’t without their work, though, as they were forced to kill a second Foerster penalty before the halfway point of the third period. Rewarded for another strong penalty kill effort, the Stars sent Philadelphia back to the power play thanks to a Ryan Suter delay of game penalty. Though the Flyers were stymied once again, Scott Laughton drew a penalty shot after being fouled on a breakaway attempt. Laughton converted, deking Jake Oettinger out of his pants and depositing his shot into the yawning cage for a 4-1 Flyers lead.

For insurance, Tippett added his second goal of the game with just over five minutes to go. Driving against Joel Hanley, Tippett went from end-to-end, slammed on the brakes, spun around, and then whipped a whistling backhanded shot past Oettinger.

The last few minutes were non-descript, with both teams content to see this one out as it was. The Flyers won, 5-1.

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