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Capital decision: Washington nips Carolina for seventh straight win

Mar 12, 2011 - 4:35 AM
Washington, DC (Sports Network) - Alex Ovechkin and Matt Hendricks scored in the third period to help Washington run its winning streak to seven games with a 2-1 victory over Carolina at Verizon Center.

Braden Holtby made 40 saves, including 16 in the third period, as Washington has now won all five games against Carolina this season.

"I thought we were a little lucky tonight and they're overdue to beat us," said Washington head coach Bruce Boudreau. "I didn't think we were very sharp tonight. They had 40 shots on goal and were carrying play through much of the game."

Tuomo Ruutu scored the lone goal while Cam Ward made 24 stops for the Hurricanes, who have dropped their past three games.

"When you don't score you don't win, no matter how many shots you have," said Ruutu. "I thought we had a bunch of chances, we didn't play a bad game, we just couldn't finish."

Carolina had scored late in the second period, but Washington tied the game just 47 seconds into the third when Marcus Johansson left a drop pass for Ovechkin, who snapped a wrister into the net from the left point for his 28th goal of the season.

Less than seven minutes later, Washington took a 2-1 lead when Jason Arnott was stopped on a breakaway, but Hendricks was following the play and banged in the rebound.

From there, Holtby preserved the lead with several good saves to help the Capitals extend their season-high winning streak.

The first two periods nearly went scoreless, but with time winding down in the second, Ruutu took a pass in the high slot, skated down low and to the left where he flung a wrister through a screen with 35.1 seconds left in the frame.

Game Notes

Carolina hosts Columbus on Saturday...The Capitals welcome Chicago on Sunday...Carolina and Washington will meet one final time in the regular season on March 29 in Washington.