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Little scores tiebreaking goal late in third as Winnipeg beats Tampa Bay 2-1

Thursday, 03.07.2013 / 10:25 PM / News

The Canadian Press

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Little scores tiebreaking goal late in third as Winnipeg beats Tampa Bay 2-1

TAMPA, Fla. - Bryan Little scored a tiebreaking goal late in the third period, Al Montoya made 28 saves, and the Winnipeg Jets beat the Tampa Bay Lightning 2-1 on Thursday night.

Little slid the puck from in-close past goalie Anders Lindback with 4:08 to play. Winnipeg also got a goal from Eric Tangradi.

The Jets were beaten by the Lightning 8-3 on Feb. 1. This outcome was much different.

Steven Stamkos got his 18th goal this season for the Lightning, who have lost six of seven.

Stamkos tied it at 1 when he skated into the low slot and put a shot past Montoya after taking a pass from Martin St. Louis 6:57 into the third period. St. Louis has five assists and seven points during a five-game points streak.

Tangradi stopped a personal 49-game goal drought dating back to Oct. 15, 2010 against the New York Islanders and put the Jets up 1-0. The centre beat Lindback from the low left circle midway through the first period.

Montoya made a couple of strong saves, including on a left-circle shot by Stamkos, during a 2-minute, 5-on-3 Tampa Bay power play midway through the second period. The Lightning's two-man advantage came after Paul Postma (interference) and Mark Stuart (high-sticking) were both given minor penalties at 7:57.

Winnipeg entered with the NHL's lowest-ranked short-handed unit.

The Jets also failed to score during a 50-second, 5-on-3 late in the second period.

NOTES: Tangradi's goal was also his first point in 16 games. His previous point came on an assist against the New York Rangers on April 5, 2012. ... Tampa Bay LW Ryan Malone returned after missing 13 consecutive games with an undisclosed lower body injury and had an assist. ... Thursday was just the fourth time this season the Jets have had the lead after the first period.

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We want to make sure that whoever makes our team really makes our team by earning it and not putting them in situations where they get preference because of their status as a first-round pick or whatever it might be. That's not going to happen. Everybody has to earn their way on our team.

— Columbus Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen on the team's prospects at development camp