3 - 4 Final - OT
  for this game

Pens keep rolling, top Caps in OT

Jan 22, 2012 - 10:17 PM
Pittsburgh, PA (Sports Network) - Evgeni Malkin chipped the puck into the net 1:31 into overtime, lifting the Penguins to a 4-3 victory over the Capitals and extending Pittsburgh's winning streak to six games.

Malkin, the NHL's leading scorer, added two assists for Pittsburgh. James Neal tallied twice in regulation, including the game-tying score seven minutes into the third period, and assisted on the decisive goal.

"Malkin comes up with the heroics in terms of setting up the goal and creating opportunities in what was a tough-checking game," said Penguins head coach Dan Bylsma.

Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 17 shots for the Penguins, who last lost on January 11 at Washington.

The Capitals won that game by a 1-0 score, but goaltender Michal Neuvirth allowed four goals on 27 shots in Sunday's contest. Alex Ovechkin had a goal and two assists as Washington lost for the third time in four games.

The Penguins faced a 3-2 deficit early in the third period, but tied the game on Neal's second tally. Malkin drove the puck into the Capitals' zone and battled to retain possession by the right boards. After Malkin fed the puck to the right circle, Neal spun into position for a wrist shot that beat a screened Neuvirth.

That goal came with 12:54 left in regulation, and Fleury made five saves in the third period to help send the game to overtime.

Shortly into the extra period, Neal blasted a shot that bounced off the end boards and back out front for Malkin, who was waiting by the right post for the game-winner.

"Malkin steps away for a second off the backboards," said Capitals head coach Dale Hunter. "Not a pass or anything, just a shot. He's a good player, and good players score like that."

The Penguins needed to make a comeback after blowing a 2-0 lead they established in the first period, when Kris Letang scored on a power-play point shot at 4:51. Just 62 seconds later, Neal got the puck off a left-circle draw and snapped a shot through Neuvirth's pads.

But Brooks Laich got the Capitals on the board 11 minutes into the second period, and Alexander Semin backhanded in a rebound with 5:22 left to tie the contest.

Ovechkin then gave Washington the lead early in the third period. Semin fed a cross-ice pass to the left circle, where the Russian star one-timed a shot by Fleury.

Game Notes

Both teams went 2-1-1 during the season series...Malkin has 26 goals and 32 assists this season...The Capitals went 0-for-4 on the power play.