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Hurricanes 5, Senators 3 @NHL

OTTAWA (AP) -In facing the Eastern Conference champions, Peter Laviolette wanted the Carolina Hurricanes to remember that they are essentially the same team that won the Stanley Cup two seasons ago.

Erik Cole scored twice and Chad Larose had three assists, helping Carolina end Ottawa's season-opening five-game winning streak with a 5-3 victory over the Senators on Thursday night.

Cam Ward stopped 27 shots and Matt Cullen and Rod Brind'Amour also scored for the Hurricanes, who improved to 3-1-1 overall. Carolina, which missed the playoffs last season, is 2-1 midway through a six-game road trip that included Monday's 7-1 win in Toronto.

"We've got to stop playing the opponent. We've got to start playing our game," said Laviolette, the Hurricanes coach. "We've got great hockey players in there who are capable of good things on any night. Yeah, they have a good hockey team, obviously, but we've got a good team, too. We should just worry about ourselves."

Cole, who opened the scoring with his first goal of the season on a power play in the first period, got his second goal 6:35 into the third to put Carolina up 4-1.

Mike Fisher and Joe Corvo scored goals 1:55 apart late in the third to draw Ottawa within 4-3. But Eric Staal scored into an empty net with 59 seconds remaining to seal the win.

"It was definitely a nice win for our team," Staal said. "Ottawa being undefeated, we knew it was going to be a good test for us and it was kind of nice to be sitting here, kind of waiting for them with them playing in Atlanta (Wednesday) night."

Dany Heatley also scored his fifth goal of the season for Ottawa, which fell one game short of matching its best start ever. Martin Gerber made 27 saves.

"They were working hard and they were really aggressive," Gerber said. "It was a tough grind. They really battled."

The Senators, who won 3-1 in Atlanta on Wednesday, began the 2005-06 season with six straight victories on their way to setting franchise records for wins (53) and points (113).

"Obviously they're a pretty good team but they're maybe a little road weary from last night's game and last night's trip so we're just going to take it as a pretty good effort from us," Cole said.

Ottawa captain Daniel Alfredsson ended a five-game points streak. Through Wednesday, Alfredsson led the league with nine points, including five goals and four assists.

Each of Carolina's first three goals came off rebounds.

Cole opened the scoring on a power play 17:33 in. The Hurricanes' left wing jumped on a rebound of Staal's shot that Senators defenseman Wade Redden was unable to clear, beating Gerber for his first goal of the season.

Cullen made it 2-0 just 1:10 into the second when he batted a floating rebound of Larose's shot out of mid-air, though only after hesitating long enough to ensure that he made contact with the puck below the height of the crossbar. A video review confirmed the goal.

Heatley drew the Senators within 2-1 when he beat Ward at 4:19, but Brind'Amour restored Carolina's two-goal lead at 6:23.

The final 43.6 seconds of the second period were played after the second intermission and before the third period after a panel of glass to the left of the Senators' bench broke when it was struck by Hurricanes defenseman Dennis Seidenberg's clearing attempt.

Notes: Laviolette used Carolina's timeout after Corvo's goal. ... Senators C Jason Spezza had two assists to increase his total to 10. He has an assist in each of the six games he has played, though he has yet to score this season.

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