SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) _ After watching a two-goal lead turn into a one-goal
deficit against on Florida on Wednesday, the Ottawa Senators decided to get to
Marian Hossa tied the game late in the second period and Martin Havlat
scored the game-winner with 6:26 left in the third to help the Senators come
away with an important 5-4 victory.
``We showed our character to come back,'' said Hossa, who had a goal and an
assist. ``That's what we need. It's going to give us confidence going into the
Wade Redden, Antoine Vermette and Chris Phillips also scored for the
Senators, who improved to 15-1-2-1 against the Southeast Division this season.
The victory moved the Senators past Toronto and Philadelphia into third
place in the Eastern Conference standings. Ottawa has 100 points, Toronto 99
and Philadelphia 98. Ottawa and Toronto have two games remaining, while the
Flyers have three.
The Senators also moved to within one point of Boston in the Northeast
Division, but the Bruins have a game in hand.
``We needed the two points,'' Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson said.
``We're trying to get home-ice advantage. We knew we had a game in hand on
Toronto. We want to finish strong. It's going pretty well right now.''
Olli Jokinen, Christian Berglund, Mike Van Ryn and Juraj Kolnik scored for
Florida goalie Roberto Luongo stopped 30 of 35 shots, setting an NHL
single-season record for most shots faced. Luongo's 2,443 shots broke the mark
of 2,438 set by Toronto s Felix Potvin in 1996-97.
Martin Prusek, making his second consecutive start in goal for Ottawa in
place of the injured Patrick Lalime, was pulled in the second period after
allowing three goals on 18 shots.
Prusek was replaced after allowing Berglund to beat him with a wrist shot
from the top of the circle and Van Ryn to beat him with a wrist shot between
the legs as Florida erased a 3-1 deficit to tie the game.
``I just wanted to change things,'' Ottawa coach Jacques Martin said of the
goalie switch. ``I just felt I needed to change the momentum.''
Kolnik gave Florida a 4-3 lead at 12:49 of the second when he put a wrist
shot high over Ray Emery on a two-on-one.
Hossa then tied the game at 4 on a short-handed goal at 15:31 of the second
when he tipped home Vermette's pass into the open net.
Havlat scored the game-winner when Mike Fisher won a faceoff in the Florida
zone, and he one-timed it past Luongo.
Ottawa jumped out to a 3-1 lead in the first period, thanks to Phillips'
goal with 0.2 seconds left. Phillips set a career high with his seventh goal of
the season and his third in as many games when he tipped home Hossa's pass
across the net.
The four-on-four goal came 23 seconds after Jokinen had pulled Florida
within 2-1 by backhanding a rebound past Prusek.
``It must have been a fun game to watch,'' said Florida center Matt Cullen,
who had two assists. ``It was fun to play, (although) obviously we're not happy
with the result. I think we did some good things as far as battling back.
There's still some things we need to work on.''
Notes:@ With the Panthers missing D Andreas Lilja (back), C Stephen Weiss
(leg), LW Darcy Hordichuk (hand) and RW Nathan Horton (shoulder) because of
injuries, the team recalled RW Kamil Piros from San Antonio. ... Ottawa D Anton
Volchenkov returned after missing 52 games because of a shoulder injury. ...
The Senators' only regulation loss against the Southeast Division this season
was a 3-2 loss to Florida on Oct. 30 at Ottawa. ... Luongo previously had set
the single-season record for most saves during a 3-2 loss at Carolina on March
25. ... Ottawa improved to 3-1-1 on its season-long six-game road trip with one
game left, Friday at Philadelphia.