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POSTGAME 5: Striking Lightning Twice

by Brian Smith | / Philadelphia Flyers
The Flyers opened up a three-goal lead and held steady for an eventual 3-1 win over the Lightning. The Flyers got on the board first when Sam Gagner picked up a power-play tally 8:57 into the first period, and extended that lead to 2-0 with another power play goal from Matt Read 3:34 into the second period. Brayden Schenn made it 3-0 on a wraparound goal just over four minutes later. Tampa Bay pulled its goaltender with more than three minutes left in the third period and was able to capitalize with a goal from Brian Boyle with 2:42 to play, but didn’t get anything else past Steve Mason, who completed the evening with 18 saves on 19 shots, while Ben Bishop stopped 19 of 22.
Just over five minutes into the game, the Flyers were granted a four-minute power play when Steven Stamkos received a double-minor for high-sticking. A lot of times a team can get a significant momentum boost from killing off an extended power play, and the Lightning were less than 50 seconds away from doing just that before Gagner helped a loose puck find its way over the line. The goal seemed to settle the Flyers and put them in control the rest of the way. 
1. Brayden Schenn: Continued adding to his career-high goal total with his 23rd of the season. He also continued his physical play by leading the Flyers with four hits. Schenn has a total of 11 hits in the last two games.

2. Steve Mason: Nearly earned another shutout but was able to extinguish the scoring chances Tampa Bay had among its 19 shots on goal.

3. Radko Gudas: Led the Flyers with five shots and seven attempts while also delivering two hits and blocking two shots.

The Flyers held their opponent to under 20 shots for the third consecutive game. It’s the second game in a row they did it to Tampa Bay. The last time the Flyers held the opponent to under 20 shots in three consecutive games was April 8-13, 1999 (17 vs. PIT, 18 at WSH, 15 vs. BUF)… Schenn now has nine goals and eight assists for 17 points in his last 14 games… Andrew MacDonald blocked 10 shots, accounting for half of the Flyers’ team total of 20 blocks… The Flyers picked up their first win in Tampa since February of 2011. They had gone 0-6-2 there since that time… The Flyers finished the season series against Tampa Bay with a record of 2-0-1, marking the first time since 2009-10 (4-0-0) that the Flyers didn’t have at least one regulation loss against the Lightning over the course of the season. 

“We were a hard team to play against without the puck. With the puck, we handled some of their pressure and a couple good pushes by them. Overall, I thought it was a real good road game by our team.”

(Dave Hakstol)

“I think lately we’ve just done a really good job of sticking to our system. Guys are really buying into their roles. Late in the season, guys are blocking shots and they’re doing the right things, and that’s how success happens.”

 (Brandon Manning)

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