Bennett has hat trick for Panthers in victory against Stars


SUNRISE, Fla. — Sam Bennett had a hat trick for the Florida Panthers in a 7-1 win against the Dallas Stars at FLA Live Arena on Friday.

Jonathan Huberdeau extended his point streak to seven games with a goal and three assists, and Anthony Duclair had a goal and two assists for the Panthers (25-7-5), who lead the NHL with 20 home wins. Sergei Bobrovsky made 29 saves.

The Huberdeau-Bennett-Duclair line finished with 11 points.

Roope Hintz scored for Dallas (18-14-2), which had won five of six. Jake Oettinger allowed four goals on 17 shots and was pulled at 6:03 of the second period. Anton Khudobin made 19 saves in relief.

Gustav Forsling gave Florida a 1-0 lead at 3:07 of the first period with his first goal of the season when he tapped in Bennett’s pass to finish off a pretty three-way passing play that began with Huberdeau.

Duclair made it 2-0 at 8:50 with a shot in close after taking a pass from Huberdeau.

Florida scored four goals in the second period to chase Oettinger.

Carter Verhaeghe made it 3-0 at 5:33 with a wrist shot from the slot before Huberdeau increased the lead to 4-0 at 6:03 when he one-timed Duclair’s pass from behind the net.

Bennett’s power-play goal made it 5-0 at 12:37, and he pushed the lead to 6-0 off a Dallas turnover deep in its zone at 15:30.

Hintz cut it to 6-1 at 1:06 of the third period before Bennett completed his hat trick at 15:54 for the 7-1 final.

Florida has scored five or more goals in 14 of its 23 home games.

Stars captain Jamie Benn played his 900th NHL game.

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