NHL Game Summary - Montreal at Carolina |
(Thursday, November 30th)
Final Score: Carolina 4, Montreal 2
Raleigh, NC (Sports Network) - Erik Cole's two goals paced the Carolina
Hurricanes, as they doubled up the Montreal Canadiens, 4-2 at RBC Center.
Justin Williams and Eric Belanger provided the other two goals, and Cam Ward
made 25 saves to post his first win since November 18th for the Hurricanes,
who have won two of three.
Michael Ryder and Tomas Plekanec scored for the Canadiens, who have dropped
two of their last three games. Cristobal Huet was shelled in the loss, giving
up four goals on 48 shots.
Montreal struck first off a Carolina turnover, midway through the first
period. Guillaume Latendresse chased down a botched Carolina clearing feed
deep in their own zone, skated in and froze Ward by faking a shot, then
slipped it to Ryder on the right side for an easy tap in.
Cole tied things up a little over five minutes later with a great individual
effort. Skating into the Canadiens zone up the middle, his initial wrister
was stopped, but the rebound kicked right into Cole's path to the net. He
followed up by tucking a shot right along the ice under Huet's outstretched
Cole got his second of the night 8:23 into the second, under similar
circumstances. Scott Walker dropped a pass for Cole just inside the blue
line, and he let a slapper go from 45 feet. That shot was turned aside with
the blocker by Huet, but another long rebound kicked out to Cole as he skated
towards the right circle. His second chance wrister hit the net low to the far
"From start to finish he was powerful, in his stride, on the puck, driving the
net," said Hurricanes head coach Peter Laviolette of Cole. "He was really
strong out there."
The Canadiens showed some life after that goal, and knotted the game at two
exactly seven minutes later, when Plekanec took a Sergei Samsonov lead pass in
the neutral zone and cranked up a slapper from the left side that beat Ward
cleanly off the far side post.
The Canes then broke the game open with two goals in 46 seconds late in the
Off a rush into the Montreal zone, Ray Whitney's spinning shot in the slot was
muted by a Canadiens defenseman. The slowly sliding puck came right to
Williams, who turned to the backhand and lifted the puck over Huet's shoulder,
putting Carolina ahead, 3-2 with 7:33 left in the period.
The lead quickly doubled to 4-2 as Belanger corralled a loose puck in the left
circle and let a rising shot go that hit a small space high to the short side.
Carolina completely dominated the period, outshooting Montreal 20-8 and not
allowing them a quality chance before putting the game away in the late
"I don't know what happened there," Canadiens head coach Guy Carbonneau said.
"Two weak plays, and it was two goals. That was the turnaround right there. We
know against them we can't take any easy shifts, they got a good pressure on
us, and we just didn't respond."
Each team has won a game in the head-to-head series this year, with both games
played in Carolina...Ward had not played since November 21st, yielding to
backup John Grahame...Carolina was scoreless in four power-play chances,
Montreal came up empty in three opportunities...The Hurricanes host Boston on
Saturday, and the Canadiens host Toronto also on Saturday.
11/30 23:20:02 ET