for this game

Stamkos hits 50, Bolts strike down Bruins

Mar 14, 2012 - 4:16 AM
Tampa, FL (Sports Network) - Steven Stamkos became the first player to reach 50 goals this season, picking up a pair of scores as Tampa Bay used an early three-goal burst to subdue Boston, 6-1.

Stamkos also made his mark as the sixth player in league history to score at least 50 goals in a season twice before turning 23, joining Mike Bossy, Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux, Joe Nieuwendyk and Alex Ovechkin.

"It was definitely in the back of my mind. It was a special night," Stamkos said.

Tom Pyatt, Nate Thompson and Ryan Shannon tallied in the opening minutes for the Lightning, who snapped a three-game skid.

Dustin Tokarski earned his first NHL victory, stopping a career-best 33 shots.

Jordan Caron supplied the lone offense for the Bruins, losers of three in a row and five of seven.

Marty Turco started the game but was yanked after allowing three goals on six shots in less than five minutes. Tim Thomas filled in for just under 19 minutes before Turco was reinserted. The former's ledger ended with four scores allowed on 12 shots, and the latter was dented twice on five shots.

Tampa blitzed the visitors early, as Pyatt tallied with less than two minutes played on a tip-in of a Ryan Malone chance, then Thompson followed 30 seconds later, and Shannon completed the burst with a power-play score from a breakaway at 4:31.

"We have to find a way, we have to stick together and stay positive," Caron said. "It's not easy right now, but just have to forget about those last three games and keep looking forward."

Thomas entered the contest but Hedman made it 4-0 at 15:38 on a high blast from between the circles.

Stamkos' wraparound -- his 49th of the year -- at 4:06 of the second period provided a five-goal bulge and Thomas was replaced by Turco.

Caron spoiled Tokarski's shutout bid less than two minutes into the third, but Stamkos reached the milestone at the 11:43 mark by taking a Martin St. Louis pass and ripping a wrister home from the inner edge of the right circle.

"I was thinking it could be it. As soon as I got the puck on my stick, I saw the right side of the net was open," Stamkos added. "I tried to get as much wood on it as I could and it went in. This was something I worked hard to get to and I hope there's more like that down the stretch."

Game Notes

Stamkos tallied 51 times two seasons ago...Tampa Bay has taken two of three over the defending champions this season with one more meeting scheduled for March 27 in Boston...Brian Lee picked up two assists for the Lightning...Bruins forward Tyler Seguin and defenseman Andrew Ference both posted game-low minus-four ratings.