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Win in Tampa gives Leafs conference lead

by Staff Writer / Toronto Maple Leafs
TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - Another one-goal loss has Tampa Bay Lightning coach John Tortorella steamed.

Alexander Mogilny scored the tiebreaking goal with 4:18 left in the third period, leading the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 3-2 victory over the Lightning on Thursday night. Tampa Bay (5-10-1-1) has lost eight of 11 one-goal games.

"We simply got out-worked off the puck on the winning goal with five minutes left, and that can't happen," Tortorella said. "It's a crime."

The Lightning lost 50 or more games each of the past four seasons. No other NHL team has done that.

"I want to see some people stand up and be counted as individuals and as a team so we can get some respect in this league," Tortorella said. "If we keep doing these things and being afraid to make the next step in these third periods, we going to lose another 50 games this year."

The Northeast Division-leading Maple Leafs made the most of two days in Florida, sweeping back-to-back games. Toronto beat the Florida Panthers 3-2 on Wednesday night.

"It was a good trip to Florida," said Toronto goalie Curtis Joseph, who faced 20 shots. "Tonight, it wasn't my doing. We had a good team effort."

Joseph improved to 17-3-2 all-time against Tampa Bay.

Mogilny scored from close range, off a pass from behind the net by Darcy Tucker. The goal followed a turnover by Tampa Bay's Matthew Barnaby.

"I'm glad it came at a time that we needed it," Mogilny said. "It's two points for the team. That's all. It's a big game for us on the road. We needed it."

The teams traded goals in the first and second periods. Alyn McCauley gave Toronto a 2-1 lead at 3:51 of the second period. Tim Taylor tied the game at 2 with his first goal in 31 games with 35.1 seconds left.

"Obviously it weighs on your mind as the games build up," Taylor said. "At the same time, we lost the hockey game. If I didn't score and we would have won, I know I'd be a lot happier."

Vincent Lecavalier gave the Lightning a 1-0 lead 32 seconds in. Mats Sundin tied it at 1 at 4:18 of the first period.

"We can't start pointing fingers," Lecavalier said. "We have to do it. Nobody else but us."

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