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game recap

Flames top Canucks, end three-game losing streak

Five players score goals, Brodie has three assists

by Aaron Vickers / Staff Writer

Frolik's go-ahead score

VAN@CGY: Frolik gives Flames the lead with wrister

2/19/16: Michael Frolik takes the pass from T.J. Brodie, then slams a wrist shot through the defense to give the Flames a 3-2 lead

  • 00:51 •

CALGARY -- Linemates Joe Colborne, Mikael Backlund and Michael Frolik each had a goal and an assist, and Jonas Hiller made 26 saves to help the Calgary Flames to a 5-2 win against the Vancouver Canucks at Scotiabank Saddledome on Friday.

Mark Giordano and Josh Jooris scored, and TJ Brodie had three assists for the Flames (26-28-3), who ended a three-game losing streak. Calgary moved within one point of Vancouver for fifth in the Pacific Division.

"We don't like those guys and they don't like us," Colborne said. "It's especially nice when you can steal two big ones from them. But it's only two points. It's nice, but we have to string a bunch of those together and we have to do it right away.

"You can't afford to give any more points away. We've got a tough road ahead of us. We'll enjoy it for a little bit here in the room and when we walk out of the rink it's on to a huge road trip in California."

Video: VAN@CGY: Colborne gets feed, buries it home for score

The Flames play at the Anaheim Ducks on Sunday and visit the Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday.

Adam Cracknell and Jake Virtanen scored, and Jacob Markstrom made 28 saves for the Canucks (22-24-12), who have lost four in a row, each by a 5-2 score. Vancouver trails the San Jose Sharks by 11 points for third in the Pacific, and the Colorado Avalanche by eight points for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference.

"You can't let the negativity take over," Markstrom said. "You've got to stick together as a team. We're in the same boat. Nobody wants to be in this boat, but the reality is we're all in it. We've got to find a way to get out of it.

"We've got to show up in practice and just work hard. That's what it takes. Wins are not going to come easy in this League."

Backlund started a three-goal second period that helped Calgary overcome a 2-1 deficit.

Video: VAN@CGY: Backlund scores from the front of the net

Markstrom stopped shots by Frolik and Colborne, but Backlund chipped a third attempt over the Canucks goaltender to tie the game 2:07 into the period.  

Frolik's backhand from the slot 3:27 later hit Vancouver defenseman Matt Bartkowski before slipping through Markstrom's five-hole to give the Flames a 3-2 lead.   

"I didn't even see it after," Frolik said. "I just tried to throw it there. It was a nice pass by [Brodie]. I came through the slot and he made a nice pass there and I just tried to throw it to the net and luckily it went in."

Markstrom stopped Dougie Hamilton on a breakaway with a pad save at 12:53 and denied Sean Monahan with a sliding, cross-crease save at 15:08 to keep the Canucks within one. But with 24.9 seconds left, Giordano one-timed a pass from Brodie; his shot deflected off Vancouver defenseman Ben Hutton and went past Markstrom to put Calgary up 4-2.   

"It's obviously tough," Markstrom said. "Every goal is tough. Obviously [Calgary] scoring three in the second period is really tough after we've been up 2-1 in the first and feeling pretty good for ourselves."

Video: VAN@CGY: Virtanen makes steal, scores on wrist shot

Off the rush, Jooris redirected a cross-ice pass from Lance Bouma by Markstrom to extend the lead to 5-2 at 3:01 of the third. Rookie defenseman Jakub Nakladal had the secondary assist for his first NHL point.

"It was right on the money," Jooris said. "We talk about gaining body position just driving the net. I was able to do that. I was able to do that. I had speed coming in from a great outlet pass from Nakladal. I read the play and it just worked out well."

Hiller made a toe save on Sven Baertschi's breakaway at 10:08, and spun around in his crease to make another off stop Daniel Sedin at 12:26.

Colborne scored on the game's first shot. Backlund took a stretch pass from Brodie, weaved through the slot and dropped the puck to Colborne, who beat Markstrom over the blocker at 1:41.

"Those are the ones you dream of," Colborne said. "Great play by [Backlund], and just walking into it … that's a heck of a play by him."

Video: VAN@CGY: Giordano scores from beyond the circle

Cracknell tied the game nine minutes later. Jannik Hansen outbattled Brodie in Calgary's end before poking the puck to Cracknell, who sent a shot past Hiller's blocker from 25 feet at 10:41.

Vancouver took the lead with 4:13 remaining in the period. Virtanen, playing his first NHL game in Calgary, stripped the puck from Hamilton and shook off a check from Flames forward Sam Bennett before skating into the high slot and scoring over Hiller's glove to put the Canucks up 2-1. Virtanen played three seasons with the Calgary Hitmen of the Western Hockey League.

"It felt good," Virtanen said. "Getting that one gave me a little confidence. I've seen this building. I played here for three years. It's pretty nice to get that one. It's not the result we wanted.

"It's going to be huge for us to turn this around. We're obviously going to have to step up as a team and the younger guys are going to have to step up and the older guys are going to have to keep on playing hard."

The Canucks open a five-game homestand against the Colorado Avalanche on Sunday.

Video: Flames score four straight goals to top Canucks

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