Texas tops Hamilton in OT to even AHL West finals

Jamie Benn, who spent the NHL season with the Dallas Stars, tied got the tying goal early in the third period and scored the winner 5:52 into overtime as the Texas Stars beat the Hamilton Bulldogs 2-1 on Friday night to deadlock the AHL Western Conference Finals at two wins apiece.

The AHL Stars, who also won Game 3 in overtime, will host Game 5 on Saturday night before the series returns to Hamilton, the home of the Montreal Canadiens' top farm team, on Monday night.

Benn, a 20-year-old who had 22 goals as a rookie with Dallas this season, increased his AHL-leading goal total to 13. He got the winner by converting a rebound after Bulldogs goaltender Curtis Sanford stopped a shot from the left circle by Mathieu Beaudoin.

The Stars are now 4-2 in overtime in the playoffs and a stellar 6-1 on home ice.

Matt Climie made 26 saves for the Stars, allowing only David Desharnais' power-play goal at 8:56 of the second period. Desharnais jammed in his own rebound after Climie stopped his jam try from close-in.

The Stars entered the third period still trailing 1-0, but needed only 24 seconds to get the equalizer. Andrew Hutchinson’s shot from the point deflected off Colton Sceviour in the slot and came right to a wide-open Benn off to the left side, and he buried it into the empty side of the net to tie the score.