PITTSBURGH – Sidney Crosby had two goals, and Marc-Andre Fleury made 22 saves to help the Pittsburgh Penguins beat the Dallas Stars 4-1 on Friday night for their third straight victory.

Tyler Kennedy and Evgeni Malkin also scored, and Colby Armstrong had two assists. The Penguins have scored 14 goals in their past three games and have at least a point in five of their past six after a 1-6 stretch.

Mike Ribeiro scored for Dallas. The Stars have lost two in row after winning six straight.

Crosby, who has a point in each of all but two games this season, scored 24 seconds into the contest when he gathered the puck along the right-wing boards and beat goalie Mike Smith between the legs.

Kennedy scored 3 minutes later on a similar play. He picked up the puck along the left-wing boards and beat Smith with a wrist shot to the stick side.

Ribeiro blasted a slap shot from above the right faceoff circle past Fleury for his 10th of the season 5:42 into the second. Ribeiro used former Stars defenseman Darryl Sydor as a screen on the shot.

Crosby’s second goal of the game – and 14th of the season – came midway through the second when he picked up a rebound of Sydor’s shot just to the left of Smith and roofed a wrist shot underneath the crossbar to make it 3-1.

Malkin scored his 10th with 5:32 to play, tapping in a nice cross-ice pass from Petr Sykora.

Notes: The Penguins hadn’t played since Saturday, their longest layoff of the season. … Pittsburgh didn’t have a power-play opportunity until Steve Ott’s holding-the-stick penalty with 3:22 left in the game. … Pittsburgh defenseman Sergei Gonchar missed the game because of a groin injury. He had played in 105 consecutive games for Pittsburgh.

AP-ES-11-30-07 2207EST


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