ANAHEIM, CA -- The Calgary Flames just can't seem to catch a break these days.
After being held to just three goals in three games earlier in the week, the Flames exploded with four markers against Jonas Hiller but still fell 5-4 to the Anaheim Ducks on Sunday night.
Despite the loss, there is good news: the Flames scoring drought appears to have ended. The team looked very solid offensively and outshot the hometown team 37-26 through 60 minutes. They also put forth the same effort they did all week and were rewarded on the scoresheet for it.
Curtis McElhinney, making his seventh start this season, was disappointed he couldn't get the win for his club.
"We had the goal output for sure," McElhinney told the assembled media. "It's disappointing, my performance. I would have liked a better showing. I feel bad that I let the buys down tonight. They scored four goals for me."
The Flames came out flying, scoring the first goal 7:05 into the tilt. Robyn Regehr made a quick pass to Olli Jokinen
, who was waiting in the neutral zone, during a 4-on-4 sequence. The Finnish centreman wasted no time taking the pass and skated in on a breakaway. He used one of his patented shootout moves, going to the backhand and sliding it five-hole on Jonas Hiller.
The Ducks responded with three goals in the opening stanza. Dan Sexton, Evgeny Artyukhin and Troy Bodie all beat McElhinney to give the hometown team the commanding 3-1 lead. The Flames, however, weren't quitting.
Jamie Lundmark put the Flames within a single goal with just 16 seconds left in the first period after an excellent play by Jay Bouwmeester
. The smooth skating blueliner went in deep on the cycle and threw the puck to a waiting Lundmark from behind the goal line. The Flames forward had planted himself right in front of the net and one-timed it past Hiller.
Calgary kept it coming in the second frame. Mark Giordano
redeemed himself after taking a slashing call by coming out of the box and immedialtely scoring on a breakaway. Craig Conroy made the heads-up pass as Giordano's penalty expired.Curtis Glencross
gave Calgary the go-ahead goal on another Flames breakaway. The shifty winger quickly switched to his backhand at the last second and put the puck just under the crossbar.
Corry Perry and Bobby Ryan were able to rally for the Ducks in the third period, giving their club a 5-4 win.
The Flames get right back to work as they take on the San Jose Sharks on Monday. Game time is 8:00 p.m. MST on Rogers Sportsnet West & The FAN 960.
|WHY CALGARY LOST |
|The Flames were able to get their offense back on track but tenative play in the third period handed Calgary their fourth straight loss. A bad line change was what caused the Ducks game-winner as the Flames allowed Anaheim captain Scott Niedermayer the chance to make the stretch pass to a waiting Dan Sexton and Bobby Ryan. Goaltending wasn't solid either. McElhinney will certainly want a couple of the Ducks goals back but especially the Ryan game-winner. |
|GAME NOTES |
|D Aaron Johnson, F David Moss and F Fredrik Sjostrom were healthy scratches ... this was the second time these two teams have met this season. The final two games of the four-game season series will take place in Calgary ... this was the first of a California back-to-back situation. The Flames take on the San Jose Sharks on Monday night before returning home to Calgary. |
|THE NUMBERS GAME |
|McElhinney made his 7th start this season ... this was Jonas Hiller's 1st start against the Flames ... Jokinen scored his 10th goal of the season ... Regehr picked up his 12th point of the season ... Lundmark potted his 3rd goal of the season ... the Flames went 97:26 without a goal, dating back to Giordano's tally against the Penguins on Wednesday ... for the first time this season, the Flames have dropped 4 straight ... Glencross had 2 points against the Ducks ... Jokinen had 9 shots on net while Dion Phaneuf had 7 ... Jokinen won 60 per cent of his draws. |
|"I think they're a very aggressive team. Their defense is always high up." - Assistant coach Dave Lowry on how many breakaways the Ducks gave up |
|HARDEST WORKING FLAMES |
| || || || |
|Curtis Glencross |
Had two points on the night, played with grit and will
| ||Olli Jokinen |
Opened the scoring with his 10th, had 9 shots on net
| ||Mark Giordano |
Scored the Flames equalizer in the 2nd, had a +1 rating