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NHL Game Summary - Washington at Carolina

(Monday, April 3rd)

Final Score: Carolina 6, Washington 5 (OT)

Raleigh, NC (Sports Network) - Ray Whitney scored twice, including the game- winner on the power play 3:35 into overtime, as the Carolina Hurricanes edged the Washington Capitals, 6-5, at the RBC Center.

Josef Vasicek, in his first game back since November, had two goals and two assists for the Hurricanes, who played the first of three in a row against the Capitals. The next two games will be Wednesday and Friday, both in Washington.

Carolina, winners in two of its last three contests, still trails Ottawa by three points for the best record in the Eastern Conference.

Justin Williams had a goal and three assists, while Rod Brind'Amour tallied a goal and two assists for the Hurricanes. Martin Gerber stopped 19 shots for Carolina.

Rico Fata scored twice and added an assist, while Alexander Ovechkin extended his points streak to nine games with an assist. Chris Clark notched a goal and two assists for Washington, which has dropped 10 of its last 13 games. Olaf Kolzig ended with 36 saves for the Caps.

Clark was sent to the penalty box after tripping Whitney in overtime and the Hurricanes made Washington pay. Cory Stillman held the puck near the right circle before sending a cross-ice pass to Whitney, who blasted a one-timer by Kolzig.

"Here we are, we're out of the playoffs, and as coaches, we're all quite sad we didn't get the extra point," said Capitals coach Glen Hanlon. "It's just another example of a team that's fairly resilient. For a team with 61 points, I think there's likely not a lot of teams like that you could attach that word to."

Dainius Zubrus scored on the power play 12:04 into the contest on a tip-in for Washington, but Whitney tied the game less than four minutes later on a heads up play. The puck was stuck under teammate Doug Weight momentarily in the crease before coming free, and Whitney scored into an open net.

Clark made it 2-1 with 2:18 left in the first on a successful shot from the right circle.

Carolina scored three times in the second period to move ahead 4-2 going into the third. Brind'Amour's goal came just 51 seconds into the stanza on a backhander in front off a rebound, and Vasicek gave the Hurricanes the lead on quick snap shot from the right circle at the 6:40 mark. Williams scored midway through the period on a rebound.

Vasicek missed 59 games after suffering a knee injury on November 11 against the Florida Panthers. He underwent successful surgery on the knee on December 5.

Fata scored 50 seconds into the third, and Jeff Halpern tied the game just 2:06 later. Clark passed the puck from the right corner to a cutting Halpern, who deposited the disc past Gerber from the left side of the net.

Vasicek's goal at 9:10 of the third gave Carolina a 5-4 lead. Williams took a shot from the right circle, which was kicked aside by Kolzig, but the rebound came to Vasicek in the left circle and he made no mistake into an open net.

Fata's power play goal, on a high shot from the right circle, with 4:33 left in regulation, tied the contest.

"We were playing well except for that five minute period where we came out flat to start the third," said Carolina coach Peter Laviolette. "Then the guys went back to work."

Washington had a two-man advantage with less than two minutes remaining in the third, but couldn't capitalize.

Game Notes

It's the sixth season the Carolina franchise has had three different players with at least 30 goals. Brind'Amour notched his 30th on Monday, joining Eric Staal and Erik Cole this season...Staal received six stitches above his left eye after a fight with Halpern in the second period. It was Staal's first fight of his NHL career...The teams have split six meetings this season.

04/03 22:40:21 ET

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