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NHL Game Summary - Carolina at Atlanta

(Saturday, February 28th)

Final Score: Atlanta 5, Carolina 3

Atlanta, GA (Sports Network) - Rich Peverley's second goal of the game with 1:28 to play helped the Atlanta Thrashers rally for a 5-3 win over the Carolina Hurricanes at Philips Arena.

Atlanta was trailing by two goals in the third period, but rallied to tie the game and Peverley gave his team the lead.

With the puck in the Carolina end while on the power play, Peverley chipped it off the left boards as his defender fell down and picked it up deep. He then cut out to the front and shelved it over Cam Ward.

Carolina pulled Ward with over a minute to play for the final attacker, but Ilya Kovalchuk sealed the win with the empty-netter.

Kovalchuk finished the game with two goals and three assists while Todd White added a goal and an assist for the Thrashers, who have won two of their last three. Kari Lehtonen finished the game with 32 saves.

Tuomo Ruutu had a goal and an assist and Ward allowed four goals on 31 shots in the loss for the Hurricanes, who have dropped two of their last three games.

Carolina is currently in ninth place in the Eastern Conference playoff race.

The Hurricanes got on the board with 6:06 to play in the first period. During a broken play in front of the Atlanta net, Eric Staal grabbed the disc and from the low left side sent it to the slot for Ruutu, who wristed it home for his 17th goal of the season.

Less than two minutes later, Carolina took a 2-0 lead as Sergei Samsonov snapped a shot from the left wing between the legs of a defender and over the glove of Lehtonen.

Ward needed to make just six saves in the first period to keep Atlanta off the board.

It appeared that neither team was going to light the lamp in the second period, but with time winding down Kovalchuk's snapshot from the left circle glanced off a defender and found its way into the net with just 34 seconds left in the frame.

Lehtonen stopped all 11 shots he saw in the middle stanza to keep his team in the contest.

Carolina gave itself some breathing room early in the third period with a power-play goal. With Boris Valabik in the box for holding, Ray Whitney sent the puck from the low right side to the high slot where Anton Babchuk one- timed it past Lehtonen just 1:41 in.

The Thrashers made it a one-goal game with 9:35 to play as Peverley jammed the puck in during a scrum at the left side of the net.

Atlanta then tied the game with 6:03 to play. An initial shot from Bryan Little at the right circle was stopped and Kovalchuk had an open net in front of him to bang home the rebound, but the shot went off the left post. However, it caromed out front and White slammed it home.

Game Notes

Atlanta hosts Florida on Tuesday...Carolina plays in Washington on Tuesday...Each team won three games in the season series...Kovalchuk finished February with 13 goals and eight assists in 12 games...Atlanta went 1-for-3 on the power play while Carolina finished the game 1-for-4.

02/28 21:53:05 ET

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