Goals from five different players guided the Nashville Predators rookies to a 5-4 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning in the third and final outing of the weekend showcase between the two clubs at Ford Ice Center.
Tyler Kelleher recorded his second goal of the tournament - as well as a pair of assists - on Tuesday, while Yakov Trenin finished with a goal and an assist to give the Preds a 2-1-0 record.
The victory leaves a better feeling for the Preds rookies, bouncing back from Sunday's 6-1 loss with Nashville's main training camp on the horizon.
"I think we got better as a group, system wise, but also individually," rookie captain Alexandre Carrier said. "We've been good, playing well together and trying to help each other, and I think that's the main point."
Kelleher put Nashville up 1-0 when he stripped the puck from a Lightning defender and went top shelf on Connor Ingram for his second of the tournament, and then the Preds went up by two with a shot from the point by camp invitee T.J. Melancon that found its way through a crowd.
Video: Carrier looks back on a bounce back, 5-4, win
Tampa Bay battled back to tie the score at 2-2 in the second, but before the frame was out, Trenin deposited a rebound at the side of the cage to give his team an advantage once more after 40 minutes.
Invitee forward Ryan Hughes converted early in the third to give the Preds a two-goal lead before the line of Kelleher, Trenin and Emil Pettersson combined on a 3-on-1 that ended with Pettersson scoring his third of the tournament. The Bolts then added two more of their own to make it a one-goal game, but Predators netminder Jake Paterson held off the rest of the push to get the win.
"Our line got some offensive time, and it was fun," Pettersson said. "[Trenin] is a big guy, strong on the puck, good vision and [Kelleher] is so fast on his skates… He was just running it."
After a pair of practices and a trio of games, the focus for many rookies now shifts to Predators training camp, which opens with team meetings on Thursday. For a player like Carrier, who made his NHL debut last season, it's a chance to reaffirm his standing on the defensive depth chart.
For others - like Pettersson, who is making his first trip to an NHL training camp after signing an entry-level deal last spring - the nerves, and excitement, have never been higher.
Video: Emil Pettersson chips in three goals for the Preds
"I'm excited, this has been a goal for me for a long time to get a contract here in NHL and try to make the team," Pettersson said. "It's going to exciting times."
"It's going to be fun to be back with the NHL guys, to learn from them and to be able to compete against them," Carrier said. "I got a taste of it last year, so it's going to be exciting. Hopefully, I'll get a few preseason games, but I'm just going there just having fun, compete hard and play my game."
The Predators open training camp with team meetings at Bridgestone Arena on Sept. 14, followed by testing and then the first official on-ice camp sessions on Sept. 16 at Centennial Sportsplex. Click here for a full training camp schedule and roster.