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Stars extend winning streak to season-high 5 games with 4-1 victory over Kings

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Radek Faksa and Jason Robertson scored 18 seconds apart in the second period, Joe Pavelski had a goal and an assist, and the Dallas Stars extended their winning streak to a season-high five games by beating the Los Angeles Kings 4-1 on Saturday night.

“We wanted to end the trip right. We wanted this to be the best game of the trip. We knew it would have to be considering the opponent, and I thought we put in a great effort," Stars coach Pete DeBoer said.

Wyatt Johnston added a power-play goal nearly seven minutes into the third period. The Stars are ninth in the NHL with the man advantage with a 24% conversion rate, but they've taken that to another level during their winning streak by going 7 for 19. Pavelski added an empty-net goal.

Scott Wedgewood stopped 26 shots in his first game since Feb. 26. The win keeps Dallas atop the Central Division with 89 points, four ahead of Winnipeg and Colorado.

“Lately, power play has been doing well. Line’s been producing. Joe’s been making a lot of plays. I think Roope (Hintz) is using his speed a lot more right now. Kind of feeding off that, so I think our team in general is playing well," said Robertson, who also had an assist and is on a six-game point streak with three goals and five assists.

The Kings got off to a great start when Kevin Fiala scored 26 seconds into the game, but they weren't able to sustain the momentum.

Fiala has 10 points (five goals, five assists) in the last six games. The Kings continue to struggle at home with a 13-11-7 mark and are tied for third in the Pacific Division with Vegas at 75 points after the Golden Knights beat Detroit.

Cam Talbot made 31 saves.

In what could be a possible first-round playoff matchup, the Stars have won seven of the last nine against the Kings and outscored them 9-2 in the two meetings this season. They face each other again on March 16 in Dallas.

“They beat us handily both times. I thought we were ready for them. They shouldn’t have caught us off guard because they already gave us a licking (5-1 in Dallas on Jan. 16). Give them credit, they came in and outplayed us. In every area of the game," Kings interim coach Jim Hiller said. "To beat a team like that, you've got to play a playoff-style game. We didn’t have it in us."

Fiala, who had the game-winning goal in overtime against Ottawa on Thursday night, wasted no time putting the Kings in the lead. On the opening shift, he drove to the net and redirected Drew Doughty's pass from near the boards and along the left faceoff circle past Wedgewood for his 21st goal of the season. It was also the fastest goal scored by Fiala in his 10-year career.

Faksa fired a snap shot from high in the slot at 10:34 to tie it 1-all. Three of Faksa's six goals have come in the past four games. On the ensuing rush up ice, Robertson put in a rebound after Pavelski's shot went off Talbot's leg pads. It was Robertson's 22nd and third in the last five games.

Los Angeles forward Adrian Kempe returned to the lineup after missing five games due to an arm injury.

UP NEXT

Stars: Host the Florida Panthers on Tuesday night.

Kings: Host the New York Islanders on Monday night.

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AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/nhl