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GAME STORY: Senators 5, Oilers 3

Mike Condon has strong third, withstanding a flurry of Oilers chances to give his Ottawa Senators a 5-3 win

by Ryan Frankson / EdmontonOilers.com

Video: OILERS TODAY | at Senators Postgame

OTTAWA, ON - Patrick Maroon had his second multi-goal game of the road trip, but it wasn't enough to get the Oilers a win on Sunday as the Ottawa Senators emerged with a 5-3 decision.

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Maroon scored a pair of middle-frame goals, and the Oilers completely dominated the third period, but they were not able to overcome a slow start and early deficit, closing out their four-game trip with two wins and two losses.

"We should have won tonight," Maroon said. "The first period we weren't that sharp, but the second and third gave us a good chance to go 3-1 on a really hard road trip."

The Oilers were sluggish out of the gate, surrendering the opening goal just 3:36 into the first period. The Senators applied an aggressive forecheck, preventing the Oilers from clearing the puck, and after a couple of chances, Zack Smith buried a rebound for his ninth goal of the season.

Shortly after the home side took the lead, the Oilers attempted to even it up as Benoit Pouliot drove to the net and flipped a backhand over Mike Condon's shoulder. The shot caught the bottom portion of the crossbar and ricocheted out of harm's way to keep Ottawa up 1-0.

With Jordan Eberle in the penalty box for hooking, the Senators extended their lead to 2-0 at the 14:54 mark of the opening frame as Mike Hoffman blasted a one-timer past a sprawling Jonas Gustavsson after a cross-ice pass from Mark Stone. Seconds earlier, Hoffman rang a shot off the post, but his next attempt was good for his 11th goal of the campaign.

The Oilers found their offence in the middle frame, though, putting three on the board to get right back in the game.

Just three days after lighting up the Boston Bruins with a hat-trick, Maroon continued his red-hot road trip with his team-leading 15th goal at 5:58 to get the Oilers on the board. Maroon took a feed from Anton Lander and made an effective hesitation move before sneaking a five-hole shot past Condon.

It took just 63 seconds for Maroon to strike again for his 16th of the year, as he put a seemingly harmless shot towards the Ottawa net, but it deflected off a defender's leg and past a surprised Condon to tie the game at 2-2. Connor McDavid got the lone assist on the equalizer for his league-leading 33rd helper and 47th point.

"I've just got to keep playing hard and playing my game, which is being physical, going to the net, getting the dirty goals, protecting pucks, cycling and creating space for those guys," said Maroon, once again extending major praise for linemates McDavid and Leon Draisaitl. "Hopefully this thing can keep running and good things keep happening."

The Oilers secured their first lead of the night 5:58 after that, with Draisaitl banking a shot from behind the net off Condon's back and in for his 15th of the season, keeping him just one back of Maroon for the team lead. The cheeky tally was set up once again by Captain Connor, who got his 34th assist and 48th point.

Trailing 3-2, the Senators refused to let Edmonton take complete control of the game and roared back with two goals to go up 4-3 through 40 minutes. Stone scored his 12th just 34 seconds after Draisaitl's goal for his third point of the night, and Tom Pyatt put his team back in the lead with his fifth with 1:46 left in the period.

The Oilers had a golden opportunity to tie it up early in the final frame as Eberle burst in on a breakaway, but his shot attempt sailed just high and wide of the top corner. Edmonton absolutely poured on the pressure throughout the third period, outshooting them 17-3, but they just couldn't net the equalizer.

"We didn't start off very good and those two goals (in the first) hurt us," Draisaitl said. "We couldn't really get through the neutral zone in the first period, but after that we had it figured out and played a pretty solid game. Especially in the third, we should have scored at least one or two goals. It's too bad, it's frustrating."

Kyle Turris put the game away with an empty-net goal with 1:22 remaining for his 14th of the season. Condon finished with 35 saves to backstop the Senators to their 21st win.

"I didn't think we gave up a lot, but we gave up enough to lose the game," said Head Coach Todd McLellan. "Their goaltender played extremely well and we've got to find a way to put those in. If we're relying on our offence to give us five or six a night, that's going to be a tough task."

With their four-game road trip in the books, the Oilers return to home ice at Rogers Place for six games in a row starting Tuesday with a huge Pacific Division matchup against the San Jose Sharks. Edmonton (21-14-7) trails San Jose (24-14-2) by a single point in the division standings.

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