NEWARK, NJ - JANUARY 09: Anton Volchenkov #28 of the New Jersey Devils rides Valeri Nichushkin into the boards at the Prudential Center on January 9, 2014 in Newark, New Jersey. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Cory Schneider earned his third shutout of the season and Michael Ryder scored his team-leading 15th goal as the New Jersey Devils snapped a three-game winless streak with a 1-0 victory over the Dallas Stars on Thursday night.
Schneider finished with 26 saves in his first victory since Dec. 28 against the New York Islanders. Schneider's previous shutout was also a 1-0 victory against Buffalo on Nov. 30.
Despite stellar goaltending by Kari Lehtonen, who made 33 saves, Dallas dropped its fourth straight.
Ryder connected at 8:17 of the second period on a pass from Travis Zajac. Ryane Clowe sent the puck behind the net and Zajac held on until he could slip it to Ryder for his shot from the edge of the right circle that beat Lehtonen to his stick side.
Ryder nearly struck again at the 10:36 mark of the second when he intercepted a pass and skated in for an uncontested shot that Lehtonen saved.
Earlier in the second, Eric Gelinas' slap shot trickled behind Lehtonen and was inches from the line when Cody Eakin scooped it away with his stick for Dallas. With 5:46 left in the period, Steve Bernier of the Devils had shot on the doorstep that Lehtonen grabbed with his glove.
Dallas made a bid to tie the game when Ryan Garbutt took a shot that hit Schneider's mask. Soon after, Stephen Gionta was charged with a double-minor for hitting Jamie Benn in the face with his stick. The Devils killed the four-minute power-play to keep its 1-0 lead entering the third.
The Stars didn't get their first shot until 10:40 in the first period. That drought included a two-minute power play. The Devils held a 10-8 shot edge in the period.
Ryder's shot from between the circles was thwarted by a nice reaction save by Lehtonen midway through the first.
Schneider made three saves in rapid succession to deny the Stars in the first period. Tyler Seguin skated down the left wing before trying to beat Schneider with a high shot. Seguin got a second chance on the rebound before Rich Peverley took his shot from in close that Schneider blocked. Lehtonen was on his game, too, turning away Zajac's shot from the right circle.
The Devils gained a power-play with 1:33 left in the first period after a high stick by Jordie Benn of the Stars bloodied the mouth of Ryan Carter.
NOTES: The Devils activated D Adam Larsson, who has not played since Nov. 23, from IR and assigned him to their AHL Albany affiliate. ... Stars coach Lindy Ruff moved RW Peverley up to the top line for the matchup with the Devils, joining LW Jamie Benn and C Seguin. ... Ruff described the Stars' 7-3 loss to the Islanders it as the worst game of the season for Dallas, which was outshot 42-23 out-hit 32-15 and lost the faceoff battle 45-27. ... Devils RW Jaromir Jagr is tied for seventh on the NHL's career goals list with Mark Messier with 694 goals and is tied for seventh in all-time points with former Penguins teammate Mario Lemieux with 1,723.