Simmonds scores twice to lift Flyers past Stars

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 20, 2014 at 10:38 pm •  Published: March 20, 2014
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PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Things are going so well for the Philadelphia Flyers right now that they don't even need to be at their best to come out on top.

Wayne Simmonds scored two goals and the Flyers beat the Dallas Stars 4-2 Thursday night for their fourth straight win.

Mark Streit and Michael Raffl also scored for Philadelphia, which improved to 11-2-1 in its last 14 games while maintaining its hold on second place in the Metropolitan Division.

Despite the victory, head coach Craig Berube was concerned with the team's "sloppy" play, particularly the second period when Philadelphia allowed 17 shots and three power plays.

"Tonight wasn't as good, for sure," Berube said. "We were sloppy tonight, at times. Overall our team is competing hard, working hard and playing like a team, and that's what you have to do. They know it wasn't good enough tonight, but we won."

Jamie Benn scored twice for Dallas, which lost its fourth straight. The Stars began the day two points behind Phoenix for the final wild-card spot in the Western Conference.

Stars coach Lindy Ruff actually saw positives in the defeat.

"If we play like that night after night, we'll win," Ruff said. "We didn't give up a lot in the game. We gave up four goals but we didn't give up four goals on a lot of opportunities and zone time. Our puck movement was good. The margin of victory, that game could've went either way real fast."

Simmonds scored his second of the game with 7:39 left to put Philadelphia ahead 3-1. After skating across the blue line, Simmonds fired a wrist shot that beat Tim Thomas to the stick side.

"That's a save I should make," Thomas said. "The team really needed it at the time, and I really feel bad for the guys for the game they played. That's hockey. But I can guarantee I'm going to be better for the guys from here on out."

Just 30 seconds later, Benn scored his second of the contest by finishing a rebound from in front of the crease after Tyler Seguin's shot followed a poor Philadelphia turnover in its own end. It was the 29th goal of the season for Benn, who has points in eight of his last nine games.

Raffl provided some insurance for Philadelphia by beating Thomas with a backhander on a breakaway with 3:12 to play.