Ottawa - January 17, 2012 - Kyle Turris scored his third goal of the season a minute and a half into the third period to give the Ottawa Senators a 3-2 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs at the ACC. Craig Anderson bounced back from giving up an ugly goal early in the game to Matthew Lombardi, to stop 37 of 39 shots in leading the Senators to victory. The Senators fought back from being down 2-0 early in the game to win their third game of the season over the rival Leafs.
Late first period goal
The Leafs added to a 1-0 lead when Senators defenceman Jarred Cowen tried to get cute by the Leafs blue line. Instead of putting the puck low Cowen tried to circle around with the puck away from Phil Kessel who was coming up the boards. Kessel raced off on a two on one and passed to an open Joffrey Lupul who scored his 20th goal of the season to give the Leafs a 2-0 lead.
The Senators skated well in the first period, but looked to be heading into the locker room two goals behind. Step up the usual hero Daniel Alfredsson who scored his 15th goal of the season on a nice backhand over James Reimer’s shoulder with just eight seconds left in the period to make the score 2-1. The Leafs were going to be called on a penalty and they actually looked like they gave up on the play.
The Senators were outplayed for most of the game, especially in the second period when the Leafs outshot the Senators 21-9. Craig Anderson kept the Senators in the game and when the team needed him the most he didn’t give up the crucial goal which could’ve cost the Senators the game. Anderson who was the NHL’s number one star last week is on a hot streak now. He’s started the last 10 games and went 8-1-1 with a goals against average of 1.87.
In the first 40 games of the year, Anderson didn’t steal a single game for the Senators. Since Christmas, Anderson has stolen three games for the Senators including tonight’s game. Even in last night’s loss to the Jets, Anderson was one of the few players who played well. Not that the goaltending is strong the Senators have shot up the standings to battle for the top spot.
Tired Senators team
Despite playing their third game in four days the Senators hung in and battled the Leafs. The Senators never gave up in the game and battled for every puck, even though they were the more tired of the two teams. The Senators best hockey was in the second half of the third period when they were holding onto to the 3-2 lead. The Sens managed to bottle up the Leafs and they played most of the last 10 minutes in the Toronto end. Even when the Leafs did make it into the Senators zone, they kept the Leafs to the outside and gave Craig Anderson a very easy 10 minutes.
- The Senators did really well in the fight department tonight. Zenon Knopka really handed it to Mike Brown with Brown only getting in a couple of shots. Later in the game Foligno smacked Phaneuf around early until the Leafs defenceman finally landed a few.
- This was billed as a big game for both the Senators and Leafs. Especially for the Leafs who had lost two in a row and fallen into ninth place. It was also a big game for them if they were to close the gap between them and the Senators. The Leafs played well but they just couldn’t beat Anderson and the Senators slowly chipped away at the lead.
- The Senators are now 4-1 during this current ten game stretch where they play nine of ten games on the road. The Sens now head out west to play the Sharks, Ducks, Kings and Coyotes. This should be another good test for the Senators because the Sharks, Ducks and Kings are all on a hot streak right now. The three teams are a combined 17-6-7 in their last 10 games so the Senators will have their hands full.