Senators Win 5-3 Over Islanders

Both teams came into this game hoping to come away with their third consecutive victory.  The Senators defeated the Sabres & Jets over the weekend, while the Islanders beat the Panthers and Lighting in their past 2 games.

It looked good early on for Ottawa as Matt Kassian scored his first goal as a Senator on a re-directed Sergei Gonchar shot.  With the assist, Gonchar extended his point streak to 8 games and set a franchise record for most consecutive games with an assist.

But it was all Islanders after that.  First, Keith Aucoin evened the score late in the first when he slid a shot through the legs of Ben Bishop.  Then, just 14 seconds into the second, Josh Bailey banked a backhand off Bishop and in to put New York ahead. Finally, Lubomir Visnovsky snuck in from the point on the power-play and made it 3-1.

To add insult to actual injury, Marc Methot collided awkwardly with Brad Boyes along the backboards and left the ice favouring his right leg.  He did not return to the game.

Cue the Pesky Sens.

In what must have been a rally for another fallen comrad, Ottawa came back to tie the game.  Jakob Silfverberg tipped a Patrick Wiercioch shot to get them within one. Then, Zack Smith caught Evgeni Nabokov a bit too far out of his net to even the score.  Another amazing comeback by this relentless team.

It almost was all for not as Keith Aucoin looked to give New York the lead when he deflected the puck off his skate and past Ben Bishop.  However, after review, it was determined he intentionally redirected the puck into the net.  No goal.

So leave it to this Senator team to put it away late in the period.  With Ottawa buzzing in the Islander zone, Sergei Gonchar’s point shot deflected off an Islander player and in to give Ottawa the lead with exactly one minute left. Guillaume Latendresse’s empty netter put it away for the 5-3 victory.

4 third period goals brought this Ottawa team from the doldrums of yet another injured player to the elation of a victory over a playoff contender.  Sergei Gonchar (1 goal, 2 assists) & Patrick Wiercioch (3 assists) finished +5 & +3 respectively. Daniel Alfredsson recorded his 1100th career point on Latendresse’s empty netter.

The Senators get Boston this Thursday at Scotiabank Place.

Paul MacLean (audio)

Alfredsson, Gonchar, Coach MacLean, Ben Bishop & Zack Smith (video)


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