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HURRICANES WIN FINAL EXHIBITION GAME, 5-3

by Staff Writer / Carolina Hurricanes

WASHINGTON (AP)-- Jeff O'Neill and Tommy Westlund each had a goal and an assist as the Carolina Hurricanes scored twice in the final 7:04 for a 5-3 victory over the Washington Capitals in the NHL's final preseason game Tuesday night.

The game was tied at 3 when O'Neill beat Washington goalie Craig Billington from in front with 7:04 left with an assist from Westlund. O'Neill then assisted when Westlund flipped a rebound past Billington with 1:52 left.

The Hurricanes finished the preseason with a 4-4 record, winning their final three exhibition games to gain momentum heading into their regular season opener on Saturday, October 7 against the Capitals at the Entertainment and Sports Arena at 7:00 p.m..

Carolina took a 3-1 lead in the second period when Marek Malik and Bates Battaglia scored consecutive goals. Battaglia fired a shot past Billington from the edge of the left faceoff circle for the two-goal margin with 4:27 left in the period. Josef Vasicek led off the scoring for the Hurricanes, beating Billington with a backhanded shot at 11:25 of the first period.

But Glen Metropolit answered for Washington 23 seconds later, tipping Brendan Witt's blast past Carolina goalie Tyler Moss. Richard Zednik then tied the game 7:49 into the third period, whipping a left-handed shot past Moss for his second preseason goal.

1st 2nd 3rd TOTAL

Carolina 1 2 2 5

Washington 0 2 1 3

First Period: Scoring: 1, Carolina, Vasicek 1 (Battaglia), 11:25. Penalties: Gelinas, Car (holding), 9:03; Konowalchuk, Was (interference), 11:42; Kapanen, Car (tripping), 13:06; Wallin, Car (charging), 16:29.

Second Period: Scoring: 2, Washington, Zednik 3 (Beech, Bulis), 1:48. 3, Carolina, Malik 2 (power play) (Kapanen, Tanabe), 6:28. 4, Carolina, Battaglia 4 (Dimaio, Halko), 15:33. 5, Washington, Metropolit 1 (Witt, J Murphy), 15:56. Penalties: Cutta, Was (slashing), 2:38; Bondra, Was (high sticking), 4:25; Witt, Was (slashing), 4:45; Langdon, Car (hooking), 12:13; Willis, Car (Ob hooking), 16:47; Dimaio, Car (roughing), 19:15.

Third Period: Scoring: 6, Washington, Zednik 4 (Bulis, C Johansson), 7:49. 7, Carolina, Oneill 2 (T Westlund, Gelinas), 12:56. 8, Carolina, T Westlund 1 (Oneill, Gelinas), 18:08. Penalties: Oates, Was (slashing), 4:46.

SHOTS ON GOAL

Carolina 6 13 13 --32

Washington 10 11 7 --28

Power-play Conversions: Car - 1 of 5, Was - 0 of 6. Goalies: Carolina, Moss (28 shots, 25 saves; record: 2-2-0). Washington, Billington (32, 27; record: 2-2-0). A:10,449. Referees: Joannette, Zelkin. Linesmen: Broseker, Nowak.

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