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game recap

Capitals score four in third to top Lightning; Kucherov injured

Get eighth win in nine games; Tampa Bay forward leaves after blocking shot

by Corey Long / Independent Correspondent

Caps score twice in 44 seconds

WSH@TBL: Eller, Hathaway score 44 seconds apart

Lars Eller buries a one-timer from the circle, then Garnet Hathaway nets a goal in front of the net as the Capitals score twice in 44 seconds

  • 01:28 •

TAMPA -- The Washington Capitals scored four goals in the third period and defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning 5-2 at Amalie Arena on Saturday.

Lars Eller, Garnet Hathaway, T.J. Oshie and Tom Wilson scored in the period, and Ilya Samsonov made 26 saves for the Capitals (24-5-5), who have won eight of their past nine games.

"The second period we got into penalty trouble and spent quite a bit of time in the [defensive] zone," Capitals coach Todd Reirden said. "We regrouped, we talked about it between the second and the third. It was up to us to get back to our game for the third period where, if we do that, [we] come out with the outcome we wanted."


[WATCH: All Capitals vs. Lightning highlights]


Brayden Point and Jan Rutta scored, and Andrei Vasilevskiy made 29 saves for the Lightning (16-12-3), who had won two in a row.

Tampa Bay forward Nikita Kucherov left the game at 10:29 of the second period after blocking a shot by Washington defenseman John Carlson that appeared to hit him in the right leg.

"You guys saw what happened," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "I don't have an update on him. Hopefully he's going to be OK. Obviously he's a huge part of our team."

Eller made it 2-1 at 1:58 of the third period, and Hathaway made it 3-1 45 seconds later at 2:43.

Video: WSH@TBL: Hathaway nets goal off stick in front

"It's a testament to the guys in this room how hard we came out in the third period," Hathaway said. "We didn't lose a step and we played our game."

Rutta made it 3-2 at 11:36.

"First goal of the season," Rutta said. "I had a couple of good looks and finally one went in."

Oshie scored on a wraparound to push the Capitals lead to 4-2 at 12:19.

Video: WSH@TBL: Oshie sneaks wraparound past Vasilevskiy

Wilson scored into an empty net with 39 seconds remaining for the 5-2 final.

"Overall we probably took too many penalties," Washington center Nicklas Backstrom said after the Capitals went 4-for-5 on the penalty kill. "Tough second period there especially, other than that we worked ourselves into this game and had a good start to the third. That was huge. And we got two points."

Backstrom put the Capitals ahead 1-0 lead at 6:42 of the first period after Rutta lost the puck on a crisscross with him and Lightning forward Ondrej Palat, giving Backstrom the puck in front of the net.

Video: WSH@TBL: Backstrom steals puck, nets wrister in front

"It was unfortunate, but you just have to turn the page," Rutta said. "It was pretty early in the game."

Point tied it 1-1 at 5:45 of the second with a power-play goal from the low slot.

"I thought we played well in the second period," Point said. "We had some good looks, [their] guy made some saves. Bottom line is in the third period we gave up some opportunities to a team you can't give opportunities to, and they capitalized."

Video: WSH@TBL: Point buries Killorn's feed for PPG


They said it

"Tremendous game by Ilya tonight. We knew going into it for him, this was another way to evaluate where he's at in his game and his development coming up against a desperate team here that needs points or wants points. Obviously the firepower, it was a test. I thought he was really solid." -- Capitals coach Todd Reirden on goalie Ilya Samsonov

"[We] played 55 minutes of solid hockey, and every time we made a mistake it has ended up in our net. It's too bad. I want to sit here and say we deserved better, but at the end of the day we didn't because of a couple of mistakes we made." -- Lightning coach Jon Cooper


Need to know

The Capitals are 15-2-1 on the road and matched the NHL record for fewest games to reach 15 road wins in a season. The 2006-07 Buffalo Sabres also did it in 18 games (15-3-0). … Backstrom had a goal and an assist, giving him 62 points (14 goals, 48 assists) in 51 games against Tampa Bay. … The Lightning are 8-7-1 at home, and their seven regulation losses in 16 home games equal their total from last season (32-7-2). … Tampa Bay forward Alex Killorn had two assists and has nine points (three goals, six assists) in his past six games. … Oshie (goal, assist) has 11 points (four goals, seven assists) in his past eight games. … Lightning forward Steven Stamkos had one shot in 21:55 of ice time and had a four-game goal streak end. … Capitals defenseman Radko Gudas had an assist and was plus-3. He is plus-15 this season.


What's next

Capitals: At the Columbus Blue Jackets on Monday (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, FS-O, NBCSWA, NHL.TV)

Lightning: Host the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET; SUN, TSN5, RDS, NHL.TV)

Video: Balanced attack, Samsonov lead Caps past Lightning

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