Senators Win 3-2 Over Maple Leafs

Check out the highlights

Another installment of the Battle of Ontario, this time with some actual meaning.  The Maple Leafs entered the night 7 points behind the 5th place Senators, having played 3 less games.  An important game in the standings, not to mention, within the rivalry. 

And it was the Leafs who got off to a good start.  Matthew Lombardi skated down the wing and let a snapshot go that tipped off Chris Phillips’ stick and through the wickets of Craig Anderson to make it 1-0 Toronto.  Then, Phil Kessel stole the puck off of Jared Cowen and began to skate the length of the ice.  The play turned into a 2 on 1 with Joffrey Lupul and resulted in the second Maple Leaf goal as Kessel’s pass to Lupul left a wide-open cage.  But with 8 seconds left in the period, Daniel Alfredsson was able to backhand the puck topshelf on James Reimer during a delayed penalty and the Senators cut the lead to 1 heading into the second.

The second period saw some controversy surrounding Nick Foligno.  During play in the Senators zone, Nick Foligno dropped down low in order to hipcheck Dion Phaneuf.  In his attempt to avoid Foligno, Phaneuf flipped over him, landing down hard and drawing a clipping penalty.  The Leafs would not score on the power-play, but that didn’t mean the situation was over.  About 7 minutes later, Phaneuf went looking for Foligno and found him deep in the Senators zone.  The two would go at it, with both players landing a couple of good shots. 

Meanwhile, the Leafs as a team were dominating play.  If not for Craig Anderson, this game would’ve been out of reach.  Toronto outshot Ottawa 31-15, but came out of the frame tied up.  That’s because during a scramble in front, a Filip Kuba rebound came out directly to Kaspars Daugavins, who kicked the puck towards the net.  On its way through the blue ice, Jason Spezza slightly tipped it (while standing overtop of James Reimer), negating the kicking motion and evening the score. 

So it was on to the third period all tied up.  Of course, we all know that the final 20 minutes in any game belongs to the Ottawa Senators and this one would be no different.   Just 1:24 in, Kyle Turris skated into the Leafs zone to the left of James Reimer and unleashed a wicked wrister over the goaltender’s shoulder to give the Senators their first lead of the game.  And that was all they would need thanks to Craig Anderson and a shutdown defensive game.  Yet another comeback from 2 goals down by this Senator team as they bounce back from a lethargic effort against the Jets and stun their Battle of Ontario rivals.

Craig Anderson was beyond the first star this evening, keeping his team in the game while making 37 saves.  Kyle Turris and Daniel Alfredsson both continued their stellar play over the past couple of games, each adding a goal and an assist.  The Senators now fly out to the west coast and take on the San Jose Sharks on Thursday night.

Paul MacLean (audio)

MacLean, Anderson, Alfredsson, Spezza & Foligno (video)


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