NHL Game Summary - Washington at Boston
(Saturday, March 8th)
Final Score: Boston 2, Washington 1
Boston, MA (Sports Network) - Zdeno Chara and Marco Sturm scored 5-on-3 goals just under three minutes apart late in the third period, as the Boston Bruins took advantage of Washington's undisciplined play to earn a 2-1 victory over the Capitals at TD Banknorth Garden.
Alexander Auld made 23 saves for the Bruins, who halted a three-game losing streak that started with a 10-2 setback at Washington on Monday. Boston moved into a tie with the idle New York Rangers for sixth in the Eastern Conference playoff race.
Brooks Laich scored the only goal for Washington, which had won two straight and four of its previous five games. The Capitals failed to gain ground on the eighth and final playoff spot in the East, currently held by Philadelphia.
Cristobal Huet stopped 26 shots in defeat.
Washington was clinging to a 1-0 lead with less than seven minutes to play when Donald Brashear compounded a double-minor for high-sticking with a roughing penalty. John Erskine was then hit with a hooking call to give the Bruins a two-man advantage and they converted to tie the game.
"Sometimes that's how it goes. You can't lose your focus and you can't lose your cool," said Brashear. "He was coming at me and I guess I lost my cool a little bit. It's an emotional game and during the game, you throw few hits and scream back and forth but it wasn't worth it."
Chara was stationed just above the inner edge of the left circle and ripped a one-timer that found its way past a screened Huet with 5:01 remaining. It gave Chara his 16th goal of the season, tying a career high set first in 2003-04 and matched in 2005-06 with Ottawa.
The Bruins still had power-play time, but couldn't beat Huet with numerous chances from in close. Tom Poti was then whistled off for slashing with 2:56 to play, giving Boston another two-man advantage.
Again they cashed in just 40 seconds later when Sturm converted a cross-crease pass from David Krejci for his 24th goal. Krejci also set up Chara's tying goal.
The Capitals, after finally killing off the remaining power-play time, pulled Huet with under a minute to play, but failed to generate a quality scoring chance.
"I admit Brash's penalties were dumb," said frustrated Washington head coach Bruce Boudreau. "A guy that's been in the league that long should know that. [But] go look at the other penalties and tell me what you think. You can't say anything because it's their [officials] decision. You go look at it and tell me what you think, I'd like to know. We're arguing that we don't think they're penalties."
Washington scored just 6:17 into the contest on a power-play goal by Laich.
Moments after Auld stopped Alexander Semin's partial breakaway chance, the Capitals won a faceoff in the right circle and worked the puck around to the left circle for Alexander Ovechkin. Auld stopped Ovechkin's first shot and the ensuing rebound, but the puck squirted free to Laich and he slammed it home for his 16th goal of the season.
The Bruins had their first big chance to tie it with a five-minute power play just over four minutes into the second period when Washington's Matt Cooke was given a major for kneeing Boston defenseman Bobby Allen, who was forced to leave the contest for a while.
Huet, though, stopped all six shots the Bruins mustered during the extended man advantage. He finished the period with 10 saves to keep it 1-0 heading to the third.
"It seems we were little tight, to be honest," Chara said about Boston's early play. "It's obvious when you're losing you don't feel as comfortable. But I have to give a lot guys credit. We handled it well and now we have to keep going. We have to keep playing like we did tonight."
Cooke was also given a game misconduct for his kneeing penalty...Marc Savard assisted on both of Boston's goals...Ovechkin, who had a hat trick in Monday's rout, extended his point streak to five games...Washington has lost four straight in Boston.
03/08 17:08:40 ET