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NHL Game Summary - Ottawa at Carolina



(Sunday, January 10th)

Final Score: Carolina 4, Ottawa 1

Raleigh, NC (Sports Network) - Cam Ward turned aside 31 shots and Eric Staal scored in his return to the lineup, as the Carolina Hurricanes defeated the Ottawa Senators, 4-1, at RBC Center.

Staal was recently granted a leave of absence following the death of his sister-in-law and missed two contests.

"I thought that's real good leadership right there," Carolina coach Paul Maurice said of Staal. "He's been through an awful lot this week, but he could sense we needed our bigger guys to step up and do something like that. It's not always in his game, but that was a real good sense by a leader, starting to understand what he needs every night from his team. Everyone is pulling for him too. I like to think that for him, coming here was a good place."

Rod Brind'Amour, Tom Kostopoulos and Brett Carson also lit the lamp for Carolina, which has won three of its last four games.

Chris Kelly had the lone goal for the Senators, who opened a five-game road trip with a fourth straight loss. Pascal Leclaire made 29 saves in defeat.

Kelly's wrister from the right side of the net opened the scoring at the 7:04 mark of the second period, but Kostopoulos tied the game 40 seconds later when he hammered home a Brandon Sutter pass to finish off an odd-man rush.

Brind'Amour fired a shot from the point past Leclaire's left pad for a 2-1 Carolina edge with 2:08 remaining in the middle stanza.

Carson's first NHL goal made it 3-1 with 6:28 to go in the third period. Staal sealed the win two minutes later, slipping a backhander through the pads of Leclaire.

"We played very well the first half," Ottawa coach Cory Clouston said. "It made a difference with Ward, he was real good. It allowed them to get their game going, it should have been two or three to nothing halfway through the game. Obviously we are having trouble scoring, to me that was the difference tonight."

Game Notes

Ray Whitney had two assists for the Hurricanes...Carolina right winger Tuomo Ruutu is considered week-to-week with an upper-body injury suffered in a fight with Darcy Tucker during Friday's win against the Avalanche...Ottawa left winger Milan Michalek missed his second straight game with an upper-body injury...Both clubs are in action on Tuesday. The Hurricanes play at Toronto and Ottawa visits Atlanta.

01/10 20:35:17 ET


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