|OTT||1||1||1||(0 - 0)||3|
|EDM||1||1||0||(0 - 0)||2|
EDMONTON - The Ottawa Senators were so focused on breaking a long losing streak on the road, they treated their game against the Edmonton Oilers like a post-season contest.
Brian Lee's first NHL goal helped the Senators edge the Oilers 3-2 on Tuesday night, snapping a 12-game road winless streak.
Antoine Vermette set up the winning power-play goal in the third period when he sent a pass back to Lee, who beat goalie Mathieu Garon with a shot from the point.
"This was a huge game for us," said Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson, who also scored. "I don't know if we made them bad or if they didn't play their best today, but we played really good throughout the whole game. It should have been a bigger margin than it was."
Jason Spezza added a goal for the Senators (13-17-5), who had lost three straight overall. Ottawa has only two wins in seven games.
"For us, it felt like a playoff game," said Spezza. "We were desperate, we were struggling and we're down on ourselves. Our confidence isn't very high right now and we're pulling at straws to find positives. We needed this win. The intensity for us toward the last 10 minutes of that game, was pretty intense."
Senators coach Craig Hartsburg could tell how badly his team longed for a victory.
"I'm happy for the players. They're the ones who have to play every night and they knew what was over our heads with the losing streak on the road," he said.
Ethan Moreau and Liam Reddox had goals for the Oilers, whose three-game winning streak ended.
"We didn't start as sharply as we needed to," Oilers coach Craig MacTavish said. "When you are playing a team that is struggling, you know they are going to be desperate to get out of it, and you have to show them something early in the hockey game."
The game started 25 minutes late because the lights at aging Rexall Place didn't fire up after the national anthem. Both teams returned to their locker rooms during the delay.
Ottawa took a 1-0 lead midway through the first period. Just moments after Garon robbed him with a diving stick save, Spezza took a dandy feed from Alfredsson in front net and directing in his 15th goal.
Edmonton tied it four minutes later on a major miscue by the Senators. Alfredsson collided with teammate Chris Phillips during a breakout in front of the Ottawa net, and Shawn Horcoff was there to get the puck. He sent a pass to Moreau for a point-blank shot on goalie Martin Gerber.
Ottawa regained the lead four minutes into the second period when Alfredsson beat Garon with a shot to the top corner that eluded the goalie's glove.
The game was tied again with six minutes left in the second. Horcoff got to a rebound behind the net and set the puck in front for Reddox, who stuffed in his second NHL goal.
The Senators, who will continue an eight-game road trip at Toronto on Saturday, took the lead for good when Lee scored with 8 1/2 minutes left.
Notes: Hemsky has been sore since being hit by Nashville's Jordin Tootoo in Edmonton's 5-2 win on Sunday. He hurt his nose on the play and hasn't slept well since. He is doubtful for Wednesday's game in Calgary ... The Senators were without defencemen Anton Volchenkov (upper body) and Filip Kuba (groin). ... Edmonton lost forward Marc-Andre Pouliot early in the second period. He sustained a concussion on a hit from Nick Foligno ... The game marked the 27th anniversary of Wayne Gretzky's five-goal game against Philadelphia in Edmonton that lifted The Great One's scoring total to 50 goals in just 39 games.
|Jason Spezza (15) Tip-in - ASST: Daniel Alfredsson (22)|
1 - 0 OTT
|Ethan Moreau (7) Snap shot - ASST: Shawn Horcoff (15)|
1 - 1 Tie
|Daniel Alfredsson (10) Snap shot - ASST: Dany Heatley (18), Jason Spezza (13)|
2 - 1 OTT
|Liam Reddox (2) Wrist shot - ASST: Shawn Horcoff (16), Dustin Penner (9)|
2 - 2 Tie
|PPG - Brian Lee (1) Slapshot - ASST: Antoine Vermette (5), Alexandre Picard (8)|
3 - 2 OTT
|Daniel Alfredsson Hooking against Lubomir Visnovsky|
|Erik Cole Slashing against Chris Neil|
|Zack Stortini Roughing against Nick Foligno|
|Sheldon Souray Holding against Daniel Alfredsson|
|SA: 22||TOI: 59:43|
|Saves: 20||EV: 20 - 22|
|PIM: 0||PP: 0 - 0|
|SV%: .909||SH: 0 - 0|
|SA: 25||TOI: 58:29|
|Saves: 22||EV: 19 - 21|
|PIM: 0||PP: 3 - 4|
|SV%: .880||SH: 0 - 0|