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NHL Game Summary - Calgary at Atlanta



(Sunday, March 8th)

Final Score: Atlanta 5, Calgary 2

Atlanta, GA (Sports Network) - Bryan Little scored twice, and Ilya Kovalchuk registered a goal and an assist, as the Atlanta Thrashers cooled off the Calgary Flames, 5-2, at Philips Arena.

Chris Thorburn and Tobias Enstrom also tallied for Atlanta, which has won four of its last six games. Kari Lehtonen turned away 27 shots in the win.

"I think we want to prove to ourselves that we can play against and beat teams like Calgary," said Little.

Jarome Iginla netted his 30th goal of the season for the Flames. It's the eighth straight season the Calgary captain has reached that mark. Miikka Kiprusoff gave up all five goals on 20 shots for the Northwest Division- leading Flames, who are 2-2-0 thus far on a seven-game trek and hold an eight- point lead over second-place Vancouver.

"Hopefully, I'll be better next game," Kiprusoff said. "It's tough, but it's one loss. We can't keep worrying about it. We have to have more energy from the start."

Despite mustering just four shots in the opening 20 minutes, Atlanta emerged with a one-goal lead.

Little put the home team on the board at 4:40 of the first period. Kovalchuk skated along the left-wing boards and gained the Calgary blueline before pulling up and handing off to defenseman Garnet Exelby, who had jumped into the play. Exelby fed Little in the left corner, and the blossoming sophomore's bid from the side of the cage snuck through Kiprusoff.

Calgary evened things with 6:24 remaining in the opening frame. David Van der Gulik's shot from the high slot deflected wide, but Curtis Glencross gathered the puck down low and dished to Craig Conroy, who deposited the disc into the yawning cage.

The Thrashers regained the advantage when Enstrom drilled a rolling puck inside the left post with 2:49 to go in the first.

Atlanta was the benefactor of a friendly carom in the middle session. Thorburn held the puck behind the enemy cage, and his centering pass went off the stick of Flames defenseman Jordan Leopold and slid through the five-hole of an unsuspecting Kiprusoff at 5:34.

Dustin Boyd's perfect pass from behind the net found Iginla for a one-timer 5:19 into the third period, then Kovalchuk uncoiled a slap shot from the right circle that went between the pads of Kiprusoff and restored a two-goal edge at 7:39.

Little capped the scoring on the power play with 9:32 remaining.

Game Notes

Calgary is 0-5 with a tie all-time at Atlanta...Kovalchuk has six goals and seven assists over a six-game point streak...Iginla extended his point streak to eight games (nine goals and eight assists).

03/08 18:46:20 ET

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