ANAHEIM, Calif. – Marek Svatos’ 10th goal of the season at 14:02 of the third period broke a 2-2 tie as the Colorado Avalanche beat the Ducks, 3-2, on Friday night at the Arrowhead Pond.
Svatos’ goal wasted a solid 60-minute hockey game by the Ducks that included another outstanding effort by Anaheim goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov.
“It’s very frustrating right now in this locker room,” said Ducks right wing Teemu Selanne. “But we have to find positive things right now and I think we did a lot of good things tonight. We just have to keep pushing.”
The Avalanche struck first when Milan Hejduk (4, Tanguay, Sakic) beat Bryzgalov at 13:53 of the first period.
With under three minutes to play in the first period, Ducks rookie Jonathan Hedstrom (5, Unassisted) stole the puck from Avs defenseman John-Michael Liles inside the Colorado zone and got a shot past netminder Peter Budaj to tie the game, 1-1.
The second period was scoreless thanks to Bryzgalov who stopped a penalty shot by Colorado defenseman Brett Clark at 9:35 of the period. Clark deked to his backhand and shot the puck over the net, getting a piece of the Russian netminder on the way past him.
Steve Konowalchuk (6, Tanguay, Sakic) snapped the 1-1 tie on the power play in the third period to give the Avalanche a short-lived 2-1 lead.
Selanne (10, S. Niedermayer, Ozolinsh) got the Ducks even on the power play, two minutes later, with his team-leading 10th goal of the season. Ducks captain Scott Niedermayer threw the puck into traffic in front of Budaj and it squirted to Selanne who buried it for the equalizer.
Svatos (10, Tanguay, Turgeon) would give Colorado the lead at 14:02 with the eventual game-winner.
“It’s frustrating when you play as hard as we played tonight and don’t get rewarded for it,” said Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle. “But that’s the type of hockey we’re going to have to play day in and day out.”
The Ducks will face the Vancouver Canucks on Sunday at 1 PM at the Arrowhead Pond as they wrap-up this four-game homestand.
“At this point there’s really not much left to say. We lost the game,” said captain Scott Niedermayer.
“We need to find a way to win, period. It’s about winning one hockey game at a time – the next one.”