Hurricanes Come Back To Beat Caps 4-3
Posted March 22, 2007 9:56 p.m. EDT
Updated March 22, 2007 9:57 p.m. EDT
Raleigh, NC (Sports Network) - Erik Cole posted a goal and an assist to lead the Carolina Hurricanes past the Washington Capitals, 4-3, at RBC Center.
Eric Staal and Andrew Ladd posted goals in the third period for the Hurricanes, who have won two straight and currently sit in the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference with 82 points.
John Grahame started for Carolina and allowed three goals on six shots and was replaced by Cam Ward at the start of the third period. Ward finished with four saves.
Alexander Ovechkin scored twice and Alexander Semin had two assists for the Capitals, who have dropped two straight. Brent Johnson allowed four goals on 39 shots in the loss.
Trailing by one goal after two periods, the Hurricanes scored twice in the first two minutes of the final frame to take a 4-3 lead that would hold.
Just 22 seconds into the third, Cole skated in on a breakaway and was poke checked by Johnson. The puck, though, stayed in front and Staal followed the play up and pushed the disc into the net to make it 3-3.
At 1:52, Ladd fired a shot from the right circle that beat Johnson high on his glove side to put Carolina in front, 4-3.
Washington never threatened to score the rest of the way and had just four shots on goal in the period and 10 overall.
With 8:44 left in the opening period, Ovechkin gave the Capitals a 1-0 lead. From the right corner, Semin controlled the puck and centered a pass in front to Ovechkin, who one-timed the feed past Grahame low on the stick side.
Just 4:01 into the middle session, Mike Commodore tallied a short-handed goal for the Hurricanes to even the score at 1-1.
The Capitals didn't take long to regain the lead, as 58 seconds after Commodore's goal, Chris Clark scored to make it 2-1. Semin carried the puck into the Carolina zone and left a drop pass in the high slot for Clark, who quickly snapped a wrister past Grahame.
With 7:22 remaining in the second period, Cole battled for a loose puck in the crease and managed to push the disc over the goal line just before being checked from behind to make it 2-2 after the power-play tally.
Ovechkin's second goal of the game put the Caps in front at 3-2 heading into the final frame as he scored with just 2:06 left in the second.