The Stars have been at this crossroads before and chosen the wrong road.

When Nashville survived some great scoring chances at American Airlines Center to tie the game at 1-1 in the second period, there was a real feeling the Stars might squander a sure two points. Instead, Dallas rallied immediately, won 4-1, and made a real statement about starting a five-game homestand.

"We had a bunch of chances and then they get a goal and you don’t know which way it’s going to go,’’ said defenseman Alex Goligoski, who had two assists. "We got a huge goal and then another one, so it was big.’’

The Stars push their record to 19-12-6 (44 points), and climb to within two points of eighth place in the Western Conference. That’s an important statement for a team that has struggled to make up ground this season.

Erik Cole had two goals, and Jamie Benn and Ryan Garbutt one apiece to spark a balanced offensive attack. Meanwhile, the makeshift defense seamlessly accepted another new piece in Aaron Rome, and Kari Lehtonen stopped 33-of-34 shots to give Dallas a pretty complete victory.

"These are very important,’’ said Benn. ``We've done a pretty good job on the road. We have to take advantage of the schedule when we've got a lot of home games."

The Stars now are 4-0-1 in their last five games and have won three in a row at home to push their record at AAC to 8-4-4. After a slow start on home ice, Dallas is hoping to use this homestand to make a run into playoff position.