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Pittsburgh
Penguins
45-28-9
Tampa Bay
Lightning
24-40-18

31 SOG
37 SOG
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PIT
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game recap

Penguins 6, Lightning 4

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:51 AM

Associated Press

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Penguins 6, Lightning 4
Pittsburgh Penguins 6, Tampa Bay Lightning 4

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -The Pittsburgh Penguins looked like a playoff team for the first two periods. That wasn't the case during the third.

Sidney Crosby scored twice in a 1-minute, 4-second span midway through second period to help the Penguins clinch a playoff berth with a 6-4 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Tuesday night.

"I think we're all allowed to smile tonight," Penguins interim coach Dan Bylsma said.

Crosby (101) joined teammate Evgeni Malkin (NHL-leading 110), who had two assists, in reaching the 100-point mark this season. It is the first time two Pittsburgh players have reached 100 points during the same season since Mario Lemieux (161) and Jaromir Jagr (149) in the 1995-96 season.

Ruslan Fedotenko, Matt Cooke, Petr Sykora and Jordan Staal also scored for the Penguins, who are 16-3-4 under Bylsma. They are sixth in the Eastern Conference.

Jeff Halpern scored twice, and Martin St. Louis and Paul Szczechura also had third-period goals as Tampa Bay nearly erased a four-goal deficit. The Lightning have lost seven in a row and 10 of 11.

"We got away from our game and I think we realized pretty quickly no matter who we play against, if we're not playing the right way, we can be beat pretty easily," said Crosby, who was on the ice for all four Tampa Bay goals and wound up minus-4 for the game. "I think we let up. We had a few big mistakes."

Crosby made it 2-0 midway of the second period before making it a three-goal game during a breakaway 1:04 later. Both came during a power play.

Fedotenko put the Penguins up 1-0 on a backhander from the slot five minutes into the second period. Cooke scored early in the third.

A short-handed goal by Halpern, St. Louis' 30th of the season and an in-close effort from Szczechura cut the Tampa Bay deficit to 4-3 with 10:17 left in regulation. The Lightning earlier failed to score on a pair of extended 5-on-3 power plays.

Sykora's 300th career goal, coming on a rebound, gave Pittsburgh a 5-3 advantage two minutes after Szczechura's goal. It appeared that Fedotenko made contact with Lightning goalie Karri Ramo right before the goal, but Tampa Bay interim coach Rick Tocchet's argument did not sway the officials.

"The ref blew it. Plain and simple," Tocchet said. "We battled hard. We just needed a fighting chance there."

After Halpern scored with 40.6 seconds left, Staal picked up an empty-netter with 12.5 seconds to go.

Tampa Bay left wing Ryan Malone left with a broken right hand and will miss the final two games of the season. Acquired in an offseason trade with Pittsburgh, Malone finishes the season with 26 goals and 45 points.

Notes: Crosby reached 100 points for the third time. ... Malkin has 301 points in 240 career games. ... Lightning general manager Brian Lawton plans to meet with Tocchet after the NHL draft lottery to discuss the full-time coaching position. "I'm looking forward to sitting down with Rick," Lawton said during a question-and-answer session with a group of season ticket holders before the game. ... Lawton said the primary offseason goal is to strengthen Tampa Bay's depth on defense. The GM feels Tampa Bay already has some of the pieces in place, including forwards Vincent Lecavalier and St. Louis, to make a serious run at a playoff berth next season. The Lightning will miss the postseason for the second straight season. ... Tampa Bay owner Oren Koules, who also took part in the pregame session with fans, said he spent one night during a recent road trip to Canada in the NHL's replay room in Toronto. "They're professional," Koules said. "They really care."

scoring summary
1st Period
NONE
2nd Period
05:00
PIT
Ruslan Fedotenko (16) ASST: Jordan Staal (24), Tyler Kennedy (19)
1 - 0 PIT
10:08
PIT
PPG - Sidney Crosby (31) ASST: Evgeni Malkin (75), Chris Kunitz (29)
2 - 0 PIT
11:12
PIT
PPG - Sidney Crosby (32) ASST: Chris Kunitz (30), Evgeni Malkin (76)
3 - 0 PIT
3rd Period
01:08
PIT
Matt Cooke (12) ASST: Jordan Staal (25), Kris Letang (23)
4 - 0 PIT
04:31
TBL
SHG - Jeff Halpern (6) ASST: Paul Szczechura (4)
4 - 1 PIT
08:59
TBL
Martin St. Louis (30) ASST: Steven Stamkos (23), Lukas Krajicek (17)
4 - 2 PIT
09:43
TBL
Paul Szczechura (4) ASST: NONE
4 - 3 PIT
11:43
PIT
Petr Sykora (25) ASST: Ruslan Fedotenko (21)
5 - 3 PIT
19:19
TBL
Jeff Halpern (7) ASST: Martins Karsums (5), Brandon Bochenski (1)
5 - 4 PIT
19:47
PIT
EN - Jordan Staal (22) ASST: NONE
6 - 4 PIT
penalty summary
1st Period
08:49
PIT
Petr Sykora  Slashing against  Paul Szczechura
09:45
PIT
Hal Gill  Delaying Game-Puck over glass
2nd Period
01:25
TBL
Paul Szczechura  Delaying Game-Puck over glass
01:55
TBL
Jeff Halpern  Hooking against  Evgeni Malkin
07:02
PIT
Chris Kunitz  Holding against  Martin St. Louis
08:23
TBL
Steven Stamkos  Holding against  Matt Cooke
09:32
TBL
Lukas Krajicek  Hooking against  Kris Letang
18:20
PIT
Sergei Gonchar  Roughing against  Paul Szczechura
18:26
PIT
Hal Gill  Delaying Game-Puck over glass
3rd Period
04:05
TBL
David Koci  Roughing against  Maxime Talbot
04:05
TBL
David Koci  Fighting (maj) against  Eric Godard
04:05
TBL
David Koci  Misconduct (10 min)
04:05
PIT
Eric Godard  Fighting (maj) against  David Koci
12:05
PIT
Maxime Talbot  Hooking against  Matt Smaby
16:05
TBL
Evgeny Artyukhin  Fighting (maj) against  Bill Guerin
16:05
PIT
Bill Guerin  Fighting (maj) against  Evgeny Artyukhin
16:40
PIT
Matt Cooke  Interference against  Zenon Konopka
goalie stats
Marc-Andre Fleury
SA: 37TOI: 59:54
Saves: 33EV: 27 - 30
PIM: 0PP: 5 - 5
SV%: .892SH: 1 - 2
Karri Ramo
SA: 30TOI: 58:48
Saves: 25EV: 13 - 16
PIM: 0PP: 8 - 10
SV%: .833SH: 4 - 4