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Lehtonen sets scoreless streak; Thrashers score three in second

Oct 12, 2006 - 1:46 AM ATLANTA (Ticker) -- On a night when Kari Lehtonen set a franchise record, the Atlanta Thrashers gave him plenty of help.

Lehtonen set a franchise record for the longest scoreless streak and the Thrashers tallied three times in the second period to post a 4-1 victory over the Boston Bruins.

Coming off a 20-15-0 record in 38 games last season, the 22-year-old Lehtonen entered not having allowed a goal in 142 minutes, 42 seconds - 10 minutes shy of Michael Garrett's team mark.

"I didn't know about the record until this morning or last night," Lehtonen said. "It was kind of weird to go to the game and know that I had to play for 10 minutes without giving up a goal. But once the game started, I wasn't thinking about it. There are so many other things I need to focus on.

He broke the record with a scoreless first period and extended the streak to 167 minutes, 56 seconds before P.J. Axelsson deflected in a shot from Brad Boyes at 5:14 of the second period to forge a 1-1 tie.

"There was nothing I could do to stop that (goal) so I don't feel bad," Lehtonen said. "We've been playing very well. Today we were amazing. They didn't get many chances. On the power play, we gave a couple of two-on-ones, but other than that, I think we were pretty solid."

The Thrashers answered back by scoring twice within 68 seconds later in the stanza against Hannu Toivonen.

Scott Mellanby scored on the power play from left of the crease off a pass through the crease by Marian Hossa for a 2-1 edge with 5:33 left. Just over a minute later, Glen Metropolit scored his first goal as a Thrasher - scoring on a wrist shot from the left circle off a lead pass from Vitaly Vishnevski at 15:35.

Hossa added his fourth tally of the season 4:11 into the final period to open up a 4-1 lead. Lehtonen finished with 22 saves as Atlanta won its third straight contest.

After a scoreless first period, the Thrashers opened the scoring 2:53 into the second. The Bruins failed to clear their zone and Ilya Kovalchuck passed to Jon Sim, who drilled a wrist shot from the right circle past Toivonen for his second goal of the season.

"With big Ruch (Steve Rucchin) going to the net, (the goalie) isn't going to see much," Sim said. " He deserves a lot of credit. I'm just happy to get the goal."

Toivonen finished with 24 saves for the Bruins, who went 1-for-8 on the power play. The Thrashers went 1-for-4.

"I could have done a better job," Toivonen said. "When you have your chances, you have to make sure the puck doesn't go in."

The Bruins, who defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday, could not carry the momentum over against the Thrashers.

"We are not a team yet," Boston coach Dave Lewis said. "We have to grow together. We have to work on things. We have to identify what's important for a team to be successful. That's one of the things I recognized tonight."

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