NHL Game Summary - Ottawa at Phoenix
(Thursday, January 29th)
Final Score: Ottawa 4, Phoenix 1
Glendale, AZ (Sports Network) - Jason Spezza scored twice to lead the Ottawa Senators to a 4-1 win over the Phoenix Coyotes at Glendale Arena.
Daniel Alfredsson added a goal and an assist for the Senators, who have won four of their last five. Josh Langfeld, recalled earlier in the day from Binghamton of the American Hockey League, also scored and Bryan Smolinski notched a pair of assists in the winning effort.
Martin Prusek needed to deny just 20 shots to record the victory, allowing Ottawa to surpass Toronto for the top spot in the Northeast Division. They are also now tied with Philadelphia for the most points in the Eastern Conference with 66.
"We've got a great rivalry, great race in our own division," Alfredsson said of the divisional race with the Maple Leafs.
Shane Doan scored the only goal for Phoenix, which has won just twice in nine games in its new building (2-5-1-1). Brian Boucher stopped only 21 of the 24 shots he faced as the Coyotes dropped their second straight game.
Spezza opened the scoring for Ottawa with exactly eight minutes remaining in the first period. He picked up the puck to the left of the goaltender and fired a snap shot off Boucher's shoulder and into the net.
The Senators then doubled their lead with a power-play goal in the second period. Alfredsson had the puck at the point and attempted a wrist shot through Langfeld's screen in front. Langfeld attempted to avoid the shot, but the puck luckily got a piece of his body and wound up in the net, as his fifth goal of the season at the 8:58 mark of the middle period made it 2-0.
Phoenix was able to pull within one after Doan unleashed a rocket from the point early in the third period. Ladislav Nagy emerged from a scramble in the corner with the puck, and found a wide open Doan at the center point. Doan then drifted toward the net before firing a laser inside the left post just 26 seconds into the final period.
Ottawa, though, quickly regained its two-goal cushion when Spezza notched his 17th goal of the season. Smolinski won the puck along the boards and sent a beautiful pass over to a streaking Spezza in front. The youngster re-directed the puck past Boucher for a 3-1 lead just 2:25 into the final stanza.
"They responded the way you are supposed to after a team scores," Doan explained.
Alfredsson later sealed the victory with an empty-net goal.
Alfredsson now has five goals and five assists in his last seven games...Defenseman Zdeno Chara played his 200th game as a Senator...Phoenix had gone eight straight periods with six shots or less before sending 10 shots on goal in the second period of this contest...This was the only meeting between the teams this season.
01/30 01:02:38 ET