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Schenn scores in OT to lift Flyers past Devils

by Mike G. Morreale

NEWARK, N.J. -- Philadelphia Flyers captain Claude Giroux has a finger on the pulse of his hockey team and can sense the change in attitude.

At no time was that more evident than Tuesday, when Brayden Schenn scored 1:50 into overtime to give the rejuvenated Flyers a 3-2 victory against the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center.

After allowing the Devils to pull into a 2-2 tie on an extra-attacker, shorthanded goal by Michael Ryder with 29.6 seconds remaining in the third period, the Flyers kept their foot on the pedal en route to winning their sixth game in the past seven. It was the second victory in three games this season against their Metropolitan Division rival.

"That's the difference since the start of the year," Giroux said, referencing the Flyers' 0-7-1 start. "The other team would get a goal and everyone would panic and try to do something different. Now, we're showing composure and a belief in the system, a belief in the players. We know if we do the right things out there, we will win, so we just had to go out there and do it."

Schenn, who sustained a 5-inch laceration along his abdomen after Dainius Zubrus' skate accidentally sliced through his jersey early in the second period, scored the game-winner after collecting a slap pass from Nicklas Grossman just over the Devils blue line before shooting past Martin Brodeur from the right circle.

The goal was payback for Schenn, who was denied by Brodeur with 57 seconds left in regulation off a snap shot from 10 feet away with his team on the power play.

Twelve seconds before Schenn's game-winner, Devils forward Stephen Gionta hit the long-side post from the left circle.

"I could have made it a 3-1 game, so it was nice to get redemption," Schenn said. "He made a great save. It's just one of those saves that Marty usually makes. I think we all believed we would win. We stuck it out and got the two points."

Not long after, Brodeur would leave for an extra attacker (Ryder) and New Jersey would tie the game with the teams skating 5-on-5. Ryder gathered a pass from Marek Zidlicky at the left post and scored his team-leading 14th goal of the season. It was the sixth shorthanded goal allowed by the Flyers this season.

The Flyers appeared to have the regulation win when Devils center Travis Zajac was sent to the penalty box for high sticking Giroux with 1:43 left and Philadelphia holding a 2-1 lead on third-period goals by Giroux and Scott Hartnell.

Devils forward Jaromir Jagr assisted on a goal by Adam Henrique 57 seconds into the first period, giving him 1,723 points in the NHL to tie him with Mario Lemieux for seventh place on the League's all-time list.

Since Craig Berube took over as coach on Oct. 7, the Flyers have gone 22-14-4.

"We have confidence in the system," Emery said. "At the start of the season, it seemed like we were kind of laboring and thinking. Now it seems like there are automatic plays out there and we're confident in the system we're playing."

Hartnell scored his 10th goal of the season midway through the third period to give the Flyers their first lead of the game, 2-1. After taking a feed from Schenn in stride just over the blue line, Hartnell skated into the left circle and ripped a shot through the five-hole on Brodeur at 9:49.

Giroux tied the game a little more than four minutes earlier on an unbelievable wrist shot from the left point with his team on the power play. After taking a pass from Kimmo Timonen from the right point, Giroux patiently waited for a screen before unleashing a rope into the upper far corner on Brodeur at 5:18.

"I thought Giroux played an outstanding game from start to finish," Berube said. "I thought he was physical, competed and did everything possible out there. He played a full 60 minutes."

The goal was the 13th of the season and the eighth in 11 games for Giroux, who earlier in the day learned he would not be playing for Canada at the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

"Anytime somebody kind of takes something away from you, you want to prove them wrong," Giroux said. "I put that behind me though. I have to go on and keep playing. It's a fun game out there."

The Flyers completed a six-game road trip 5-1-0. They return to Wells Fargo Center for home games against the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday and the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday.

The Devils, who lost their third straight, will host the Dallas Stars on Thursday and the Florida Panthers on Saturday. Though New Jersey has done a commendable job defensively this season, the team has struggled on offense; it has scored 13 goals in the past seven games.

"It's kind of mind-boggling a little bit because we are better than what the results on the ice are," Brodeur said. "What's the answer? I don't know. We're not playing bad hockey. I don't know if our depth is something to be questioned. It's just a matter of maybe a goalie making a save that you're not supposed to make, or you score a goal you're not supposed to get."

Emery made two big saves early in the third period when he denied a slap shot from the left circle by Ryane Clowe before denying Clowe on the rebound from the slot at 3:11.

Emery made 31 saves; Brodeur finished with 25.

Henrique gave the Devils a 1-0 lead less than a minute into the game when he tucked home his 10th of the season and fourth goal in six games off a great pass from Jagr.

"I don't think they were ready from the first minute, and we didn't take advantage of that," Jagr said.

Jagr took a pass from Henrique and skated low into the right circle before backhanding a pass through the slot that tipped the stick of Clowe. Henrique curled the cage with defenseman Mark Streit but gathered the puck on his backhand and knocked it past Emery.

Henrique said he believes it's just a matter of time before the Devils begin finding the back of the net with regularity.

"I don't know if we have to come out desperate [against Dallas], but we have to come out and play our game," Henrique said. "I feel we're getting in on the forecheck and getting chances and creating turnovers. But we have to find a way to grab that second and third goal."


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