The Florida Panthers will be happy to get out of dodge and leave Texas after they were beaten for a second-straight time by the retooled Dallas Stars. The Cats are now 2-1-1 in the exhibition season.
Antoine Roussel scored the first two goals of the game and drew an assist on the third to power the Stars to a 4-1 victory over the Panthers before a crowd of 7,762 at San Antonio's AT&T Center Friday night.
Defenseman Tom Gilbert, in camp on a PTO, scored Florida's only goal early in the third period to cut the Dallas lead to 3-1. Brian Campbell and Marcel Goc picked up the helpers on the power play marker.
Michael Houser went the distance in goal for the Panthers and stopped 25 of 29 shots. Dan Ellis played the whole game for Dallas and made 28 saves to post the win.
The Cats power play went a disappointing 1 for 5 on the night .
Florida continued its preseason pattern of falling behind early as Roussel notched his first goal at the 4:25 mark of the opening period. The even-strength goal was set up by Trevor Daley and Jyrki Jokipakka.
Roussel struck again just 45 seconds into period number two with assists going to Chris Mueller and Patrick Nemeth.
The French-born Roussel picked up his third point of the night early in the third period to give Dallas a 3-0 lead. Roussel combined with Alex Goligoski to set up a Colton Sceviour power play goal at the 2:37 mark. The goal came with Florida's Jed Ortmeyer serving a slashing minor.
Mueller completed the scoring with 5:50 remaining in the game off a feed from Travis Morin after a Florida turnover.
The good news for the Cats is they get right back at it tonight with a match against the Tampa Bay Lightning at 7 pm. Jacob Markstrom is slated to get the start in goal.
I would assume the Cats will be leaving a good number of players in San Antonio as the Rampage open their camp tomorrow. Feel free to come back to see or chime in with any updates... this is a caterwaul after all.