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by Staff Writer / Pittsburgh Penguins

Atlanta rallied Wednesday night to post a 4-2 win over the Penguins at Mellon Arena.

The loss was the fifth in a row for the Penguins.

"If we want to compete, we have to pick it up," Penguins center Sidney Crosby said. "It starts off with one and I think we just have to be worried about that first one and find a way to get it."

"Overall, we got a pretty decent effort from everyone. We just came up short," Penguins coach Michel Therrien said. "They are a good hockey team. We're facing adversity as a team. There's nothing wrong with facing adversity - it's going to make us better."

Erik Christensen got the Penguins on the scoreboard with 3:09 left in the first period.

Ryan Whitney's shot from the near point was knocked down along the near post. Christensen shoveled it at the net. It deflected off the far post and ricocheted off Kari Lehtonen's skates and trickled into the net for a power-play goal. Mark Recchi earned the other assist.

Vitaly Vishnevski's wrister deflected off a stick and sailed past a screened Marc-Andre Fleury 8:18 into the second period to knot the score at 1-all.

Niclas Havelid one-timed a shot past Fleury for a 2-1 Thrashers lead with 3:50 left on the clock in the second.

Ryan Whitney tallied a power-play 57 seconds into the third period. Evgeni Malkin sent him a cross-ice pass from the low boards. He rifled the shot past Lehtonen.

Vyacheslav Kozlov put Atlanta ahead for good, 3-2, 7:04 into the third period.

Bobby Holik added an empty-net goal to seal the verdict for the Thrashers.

Lehtonen stopped 35 of 37 shots to earn the win."He's a big part of their hockey team. He's been phenomenal," Therrien said. "That's the type of game that could go both ways."

ICE CHIPS: Dominic Moore and Ronald Petrovicky were the Penguins' healthy scratches...Garnet Exelby and Brad Larsen were the Thrashers' healthy scratches...The announced attendance was 17,132...Kari Lehtonen (No. 1), Vyacheslav Kozlov (No. 2) and Erik Christensen (No. 3) were the game's three stars.



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