NHL Game Summary - Toronto at Ottawa
(Saturday, February 3rd)
Final Score: Toronto 3, Ottawa 2 (SO)
Ottawa, ON (Sports Network) - John Pohl netted the game-winning goal in the fifth round of the shootout, leading the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 3-2 win over the Ottawa Senators at Scotiabank Place.
Jeff O'Neill and Mats Sundin scored in regulation for the Maple Leafs, who have won five of their last six games. Sundin also hit the net in the shootout, and Andrew Raycroft made 30 saves to post his 24th win of the year.
Daniel Alfredsson and Mike Comrie lit the lamp for the Senators, who lost for the second time in three contests. Antoine Vermette notched Ottawa's lone shootout score, and Ray Emery stopped 36-of-38 shots in regulation, but gave up two goals on five shootout chances to drop to 22-13-1 this season.
On the deciding goal, Pohl used a simple backhand move to pull Emery out of position, then lifted the puck under the crossbar for the score. On the Senators' final chance, Jason Spezza tried to sneak one through Raycroft, but was denied to end the game.
Down by a pair heading into the final 20 minutes, the Senators tallied twice to draw even with their provincial rivals.
Alfredsson made it 2-1 with Toronto's Wade Belak in the box at the 4:47 mark of the third. The Sens' captain snuck behind two Leafs penalty-killers to tap home a long feed from Dany Heatley who was stationed at the left point.
Seconds later, a potential tying goal by Mike Fisher was waved off because the puck ticked off the right post and crossbar before kicking out in front. It did not deter the home club, as they kept pressuring until Comrie slid one through Raycroft's pads on a breakaway with 8:06 played in the period to forge a 2-2 tie.
In a scoreless first period, Comrie had the best chance to put Ottawa on the board, but Raycroft dove backwards and swept his side-angle shot away with his glove while the Senators were on the power play.
However, the Leafs struck for the game's first goal 6:03 into the second, as Matt Stajan carried into the Ottawa zone down the left wing, waited until he hit the outer edge of the left circle, and hit O'Neill right in front for a tap-in.
Sundin upped the lead to 2-0 with 5:08 to play in the period, when he went top shelf on the far side as Emery dove across the crease to follow a loose puck. Alexei Ponikarovsky made the play happen as he picked up the disc inside the right circle off a scramble in front, and waited until Sundin got into position to send a cross-ice pass to the Leafs sniper.
Ottawa has won 11 of the last 13 meetings, including four of six this season by a combined score of 28-10...Both Leafs wins over the Senators this year have come at Scotiabank Place, but Toronto is just 2-5 in Ottawa since the beginning of last season...Emery picked up an assist, his first of the year, on Comrie's third-period score...The Leafs play in St. Louis on Tuesday, while the Senators travel to Buffalo on Wednesday.
02/03 22:41:04 ET