TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Jamie Benn had two goals and an assist to leading the Stars in a 5-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday night.
Tyler Seguin had his team-leading 35th goal, and Vernon Fiddler and Antoine Roussel also scored for Dallas. Kari Lehtonen stopped 27 shots.
Steven Stamkos and Andrej Sustr scored for Tampa Bay, aand Ben Bishop finished with 23 saves.
Benn produced all of his points in the first period. The left winger opened the scoring 40 seconds in, redirecting a shot by Alex Goligoski from along the right boards into the left side of the net. He struck again at the 5:37 mark, snapping a shot past Bishop from the right circle.
Two minutes later, Lightning defenseman Radko Gudas was dealt a match penalty for an illegal check to Roussel’s head. Dallas failed to capitalize on the five-minute major, but Benn and his brother Jordie set up Seguin late in the period to make it 3-0.
Tampa Bay responded with a pair of goals early in the second period. Stamkos scored two minutes in, and Sustr lifted a rebound past Lehtonen at 6:44 for his first NHL goal.
Fiddler and Roussel beat Bishop with backhanders in the third to secure the victory that lifted Dallas past Phoenix into the second wild-card position in the Western Conference. The Stars last reached the postseason in 2008.
NOTES: Sustr was recalled from the AHL on Friday. . Tampa Bay D Mike Kostka missed his second game with a concussion that resulted in a three-game league suspension for Montreal D Douglas Murray. . Dallas LW Erik Cole (upper body) returned after being sidelined seven games. Stars LW Ray Whitney (lower body) sat out for the first time since Jan. 2. . During a pregame ceremony on the plaza, the Lightning unveiled a bronze statue depicting former captain Dave Andreychuk raising the 2004 Stanley Cup.