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Umberger scores twice, Briere nets winner as Flyers down Habs 4-2

NHL.com @NHL

MONTREAL - Daniel Briere scored in the second period and Martin Biron had a brilliant game in goal as the Philadelphia Flyers held off a 36-shot Montreal attack to defeat the Canadiens 4-2 Saturday in Game 2 of their Eastern Conference semifinal.

The victory evened the best-of-seven series at 1-1 with the next two games in Philadelphia on Monday and Wednesday.

R.J. Umberger, with two, and Jeff Carter also scored for the Flyers, when beat Montreal for the first time in six meetings this season.

Saku Koivu and Andrei Markov each had his first of the playoffs for Montreal.

The Flyers had blown two-goal leads three times in the this post-season, including in their 4-3 overtime loss to Montreal in Game 1, and nursed a 3-1 lead in the third period until Markov closed the gap to one goal at the 1:26 mark.

But Biron held on and Philadelphia got the split of the opening two games they were seeking, even though they were widely outplayed by Montreal and outshot 36-23 on Saturday.

For a second game in a row, Umberger opened the scoring as his soft wrist shot went off a stick and sailed over a screened Carey Price's left shoulder 5:53 into the game.

Less than three minutes later, Carter hit the same spot over Price's shoulder on a rush during a power play.

Montreal failed to score with a two-man advantage for 1:09, but Koivu got one as the second minor was about to end as he came from behind the net and tucked the puck inside the post at 16:18.

The Canadiens poured on the pressure in the second half of the second period, but Biron stoned Tomas Plekanec twice with glove saves, once on a breakaway and again on a blast from in front of the crease during a power play.

The 21,273 spectators, who have booed Briere every time he touches the puck all season after his decision to sign with the Flyers instead of Montreal last summer, were not pleased to see the target of their discontent sweep in front of the net and slide his seventh goal of the playoffs under Price at 13:35.

The teams started the third period playing each a man short and Christopher Higgins found Markov with a pass and quick shot into an open side.

The set off a wild third period as the Canadiens shortened their bench and went for the equalizer, but a Markov giveaway led to Umberger's second of the game with 2:21 left to play. Umberger beat price to a high pass from Scottie Upshall and the puck went off the post, off the goalie's skate and in.

Biron got away with playing the puck in the banned area behind the goal-line, although Price did the same in Game 1 and that wasn't called either.

Notes: Veteran defenceman Patrice Brisebois was a surprise scratch for Montreal with a leg injury and was replaced by Ryan O'Byrne. Guillaume Latendresse and Michael Ryder also sat out for Montreal, while Riley Cote, Ryan Parent and Denis Tolpeko didn't dress for the Flyers. . . Philadelphia defenceman Jaroslav Modry has gone home to the Czech Republic to attend the funeral of his father, who died last week of colon cancer. Modry is to return to Philadelphia on Tuesday. . . No Canadien has ever scored on a penalty shot in the playoffs. Charlie Sands (1942), Frank Mahovlich (1971), Mats Naslund (1984) and Andrei Kostitsyn in the series opener on Thursday night were all stopped.

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