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POSTGAME 5: A Capital W

Hayes shorthanded goal lifts Flyers to 3-2 victory over Caps on Wednesday night at the Wells Fargo Center

by Bill Meltzer @BillMeltzer

Hayes' shorthanded goal

WSH@PHI: Hayes nets backhander for breakaway SHG

Kevin Hayes skates in on the break and slips a a backhander past Braden Holtby for a shorthanded goal and to give the Flyers a 3-2 lead

  • 00:55 •

Returning home from a six-game road trip, the Philadelphia Flyers skated to a 3-2 win over the powerhouse Washington Capitals at the Wells Fargo Center on Wednesday night. Five successful penalty kills keyed the victory for the Flyers.

The teams traded off two first period goals in a frame where the Flyers had the majority of the territorial control. Travis Konecny scored early, Robert Hägg scored late and Washington's Nicklas Bäckström and Jakub Vrana tallied in between.

Washington had the better of puck possession -- and a huge edge in shots -- in the second period but Philly got the lone goal: Kevin Hayes (shorthanded, 13th) at 17:59. 

In the third period, Philly outshot the Caps, 11-8, in closing out the win. Carter Hart turned in a stellar final 40 mins after some rough moments in the first period to stop 26 of 28 shots. Braden Holtby stopped 25 of 28 shots in a losing cause.

Three Stars:
1st: Kevin Hayes (Game winning, short-handed goal)
2nd: Travis Konecny (1g)
3rd: Jakub Vrana (1g)

The Flyers, angry about a slashing call on Sean Couturier after Couturier had twice been fouled by Caps players without penalties, channeled the emotion the right way on the ensuing penalty kill. Scott Laughton checked John Carlson at the defensive blue line to force a turnover. Kevin Hayes jumped on the loose puck and rumbled off on a breakaway to put the Flyers ahead for good.

* The Flyers got off to strong start -- minus the outnumbered chances they were giving up early in Tuesday's game in Raleigh -- and earned a quick lead. At 3:24, after Sean Couturier pressured Nick Jensen into a turnover, Konency went upstairs on Holtby from point blank range. The first bonafide Caps scoring chance ended up in the Flyers' net at 7:11. Travis Sanheim was pressured behind the net by Alex Ovechkin and turned the puck over to Tom Wilson, who passed out to an open Bäckström near the left hash marks. Video: WSH@PHI: Hagg hammers home slap shot for equalizer

* The second period got off to a somewhat feisty start, with plenty of chirping and after-whistle pushing and shoving. At 3:40, Tom WIlson drew a high-sticking minor against the Flyers' Phil Myers, putting the Caps on the power play. The Flyers did a good job of killing it off.

* As the second period moved along, the game became the Carter Hart Show, as the young Flyers goalie erased several tough chances. The Flyers trailed 9-0 in shots -- although Kevin Hayes missed the net on a prime chance -- for 13+ minutes before Holtby denied a Phil Myers shot with Couturier screening right in front of him.

* The Flyers had the first wave of momentum in the third period, led by Hayes. The Caps pushed back and then got another power play as Couturier went back to the box for another slash on Wilson. The successful kill was highlighted by Hart stoning Wilson on a breakaway.

* The Flyers extended their home winning streak to five in-a-row where they have outscored the opposition (19-6)... They also remain unbeaten in regulation against the Eastern Conference, going 9-0-3.

* Travis Konecny scored for the second straight game - He now leads the team in goals (14).Video: WSH@PHI: Konecny buries wrist shot at the doorstep

* Sean Couturier recorded an assist, extending his point AND assist streak to four straight games (2g-4a)... He also led the team with five shots on goal and went 90% on face-offs, winning nine of 10 draws.

* Carter Hart improved his home record to 12-1-2 with a .945 save percentage and 1.52 goals-against average, which is the best in the NHL for goaltenders who have appeared in more than five games at home.

* Couturier also has recorded a point in the second game of a back-to-back for the seventh straight time and eighth out of their last nine "second" games.

* Robert Hagg scored his first goal of the season and led the team with three blocks... Ivan Provorov logged 26:23, the most of any player in the game... Michael Raffl led the team with four hits.

* The Flyers continue their three-game homestand on Saturday night at the Wells Fargo Center against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Puck drop is 7:00 p.m. on NBCSP+ and 93.3 WMMR. 

Video: Hear from Flyers coach following win over WSHVideo: Hear from Hagg, Friedman and Hart following win

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