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Power-play goals help Ducks defeat Flames in Game 4

by Aaron Vickers /

CALGARY -- The Anaheim Ducks are one win from the Western Conference Final.

Matt Beleskey scored the game-winning goal, and Frederik Andersen made 25 saves to lift the Ducks to a 4-2 victory against the Calgary Flames on Friday in Game 4 of the Western Conference Second Round at Scotiabank Saddledome.

The Ducks lead the best-of-7-series 3-1. Game 5 is Sunday in Anaheim (10 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN, TVA Sports). Including the Stanley Cup Playoffs and regular season, the Ducks have won 21 straight games at Honda Center against the Flames dating to Game 3 of their first-round playoff series in 2006.

"It's playoffs. You never know what's going to happen," Beleskey said. "We love going home. We love playing in front of our home fans, but I don't think that whole streak thing matters at this point. It's Game 5 of the playoffs. We need a big effort."

Anaheim hasn't advanced to the conference final since winning the Stanley Cup in 2007.

Beleskey helped bring the Ducks one step closer to a best-of-7 series against the Chicago Blackhawks, who advanced to the West final by completing a sweep of the Minnesota Wild on Thursday.

On a four-minute power play to start the third period after Flames forward Joe Colborne was assessed a double minor for high sticking at the end of the second, Karri Ramo stopped Jakob Silfverberg's initial shot but kicked the puck to Beleskey, who beat the Calgary goaltender to make it 3-2 at 1:11 with his fourth goal of the playoffs.

"Our power play has been working hard all year," Beleskey said. "We were creating momentum all game. [Silfverberg] just made that nice shot off the pads, and I was trying to get open in the slot and I just fired it home. We've got to execute. We've got to take care of business when they take a penalty like that at the end of the period. We've got to make them pay and we did."

Colborne owned the penalty.

"That's on me," he said. "That's on me. I definitely let the boys down there. It's tough. But we're not out of it yet. We're going to rebound and come back and have the best game of the year in game 5."

Beleskey has one goal in each of the first four games of the series. He and Teemu Selanne are the only players in Ducks history to score in Games 1-4 of a playoff series; Selanne did so in the first round in 2011 against the Nashville Predators.

"That's a nice guy to be joining," Beleskey said.

Patrick Maroon scored an empty-net goal with 36.7 seconds remaining, and Andersen made saves on all eight shots he faced in the third period, including two during a 56-second, 5-on-3 man-advantage for the Flames, to earn his seventh win of the playoffs.

"I think that was probably our most complete game of the series, but a couple of lapses in a short span and they made us pay," Flames forward Matt Stajan said. "It's a bad bounce on that penalty at the end of the (second) period, but you've got to give them credit, they made us pay. We had a chance on a 5-on-3; last game we were able to score, and tonight we didn't."

Silfverberg gave the Ducks a 1-0 lead with a power-play goal early in the first period, but the Flames responded 39 seconds later.

Stickhandling into the Ducks end, Johnny Gaudreau darted between two Anaheim defenders before stepping around Hampus Lindholm and breaking in on Andersen. The Ducks goalie got his pad down to stop Gaudreau from jamming the puck in, but Sean Monahan tapped the rebound into the back of the net to tie the game 1-1.

Micheal Ferland, playing in his first game since leaving in the first period of Game 1 of the series with an undisclosed injury, stepped over the Anaheim blue line and beat Andersen to the blocker side with a slap shot from 40 feet out 67 seconds later to put Calgary ahead.

Andersen's glove save against Gaudreau on a rebound at 5:32 of the second period and Ramo's point-blank pad save against Maroon at 11:00 helped to hold the score at 2-1 until a Gaudreau gaffe led to Andrew Cogliano's game-tying goal with 3:18 remaining in the period.

"Just like them, we can come back," Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said. "I knew if we were down one or even (after the first period), we'd be OK."

After picking up a loose puck in the Calgary end, Gaudreau started to head up ice but was stripped by Cogliano, who took a quick return pass from Kyle Palmieri before beating Ramo between the legs to tie the game 2-2.

"We can talk about Johnny. We can talk about [Colborne]'s penalty," Flames coach Bob Hartley said. "We will learn. They're two great kids. It's sad because we paid on both of those situations, but there comes a point as a coaching staff that you don't want those plays but you have to look at the individuals.

"They're two unbelievable kids. They want to learn, and when we talk about experience, those situations will make them better. Tonight we're paying a big price, but at the same time, those guys will be a big part of our team. They made us win way more games than they made us lose."

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