for this game

Ranger ignites third-period flurry for Lightning

Dec 22, 2006 - 7:55 AM
OTTAWA (Ticker) -- Defenseman Paul Ranger came to the rescue.

Ranger scored his second career goal to snap a third-period tie and added an assist as the Tampa Bay Lightning posted a 4-2 comeback victory over the Ottawa Senators.

Ruslan Fedotenko and Vincent Lecavalier also scored in the third period for the Lightning, who won their fifth game of the season when trailing after two periods.

"The last two to three weeks our third period hasn't been good," Tampa Bay coach John Tortorella said. "We ended up with a good third period tonight."

Tampa Bay, which has won two straight after losing four in a row, had won just eight times in its last 26 trips to Ottawa.

"We have struggled winning in this building, but we got the win tonight," Tortorella said. "You get some results as far as your efforts go. During this little jam we're in, we have played hard. We just have not made a big play or have gotten a big save to win a hockey game.

"We win two games on the road, now we go home and we'll just clutch and grab and do everything we can to try and get a point."

Ranger took a faceoff feed from Brad Richards just beyond the right point and launched a wrister that tipped off Mike Neil's stick and past goaltender Ray Emery for a 3-2 lead at 8:53 of the final stanza.

"We've had a few struggles in this building before, so it's real nice to get a win here tonight," Ranger said. "We played a real good team game. They're very highly skilled players and they can make plays, so the quicker you get on them, the less time they have to make the plays."

Ranger's only other goal came last season in his rookie campaign, a game-winner in the third period against Atlanta on March 30.

The 22-year-old Ranger set up the tying goal by Fedetenko 3 1/2 minutes into the final period. Fedotenko took a beautiful breakout pass from Ranger up the right boards, cut to his left into the middle of the ice and ripped a slap shot that went under the glove and over the pad of Emery.

"I was trying to cut inside to make the goalie move," Fedotenko said. "If I can get inside, sometimes I can beat the goalie like that."

Lecavalier scored an empty-net goal with 53 seconds left to seal the victory and reach 20 goals for the seventh consecutive season.

"I'm disappointed in myself for not coming up with some good saves in the third," Emery said. "We came out hard and we got the first goal in the second period. We put ourselves in a good spot for the third period, but we have to do a better job finishing it off. Most of all, I have to make some saves."

Marc Denis recorded 16 saves and kept Ottawa off the scoreboard for the final 24 minutes for Tampa Bay.

"I hate the word slump. We had a little bit of a dry spell," Denis said. "We were playing well against Ottawa tonight. We were desperate after what happened against Boston, so to get it done and to do it here in the last 20 minutes. It's good to get it done."

Dany Heatley and Antoine Vermette both scored for the Senators, who have lost six of their last eight games and dropped to 6-9-0 at home.

"It's really disappointing. It's a game we really needed to win and we wanted to end up with two for Christmas, so it's really disappointing," Ottawa right wing Daniel Alfredsson said. "We did some good things. We had some good chances at winning the game.

"They scored a nice goal to tie it up and they got a lucky break on their winning goal. It's very frustrating, we've always been good at home and if we want to get ourselves in a good position, we're going to have to turn it around."

Emery finished with 26 saves.

After going 0-for-7 on the power play in Tuesday's 7-2 defeat to Boston, Ottawa opened the scoring 2:21 into the second period after capitalizing on its second opportunity with the man advantage.

From just outside the top of the left faceoff circle, Jason Spezza fed Alfredsson, who was positioned next to the left post. He zipped a pass across the crease to Heatley, who easily put in his 20th goal of the season into a wide-open net.

Tampa Bay tied it on the break when Martin St. Louis fed Lecavalier on the left wing, got a pass back and fired a shot that deflected off Emery and into the net at 5:46. The goal was St. Louis' 23rd of the season and league-leading 12th in the middle stanza.

Ottawa retook the lead with 6:07 left in the second period after Patrick Eaves dug the puck out of the left corner and passed to Vermette, who drilled a slap shot from the left dot between Denis' pads for his third tally against Tampa Bay this season.

Spezza left in the third period with a lower-body injury.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TAMPA BAY 0 1 3 4
    OTTAWA 0 2 0 2 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: OTT - (PP) DANY HEATLEY 20 (DANIEL ALFREDSSON, JASON SPEZZA)
    2:21
    TAM - MARTIN ST. LOUIS 23 (VINCENT LECAVALIER) 5:46
    OTT - ANTOINE VERMETTE 13 (PATRICK EAVES) 13:53
    3RD PRD: TAM - RUSLAN FEDOTENKO 9 (PA

    Dec 21 9:59 PM


  • NHL
    TAMPA BAY 4
    OTTAWA 2
    3RD PRD: TAM - (EN) VINCENT LECAVALIER 20 (UNASSISTED) 19:07

    Lightning vs. SenatorsDec 21 9:59 PM


  • NHL
    TAMPA BAY 3
    OTTAWA 2
    3RD PRD: TAM - PAUL RANGER 1 (BRAD RICHARDS) 8:53

    Lightning vs. SenatorsDec 21 9:37 PM


  • NHL
    TAMPA BAY 2
    OTTAWA 2
    3RD PRD: TAM - RUSLAN FEDOTENKO 9 (PAUL RANGER) 3:30

    Lightning vs. SenatorsDec 21 9:25 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TAMPA BAY 0 1 1
    OTTAWA 0 2 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: OTT - (PP) DANY HEATLEY 20 (DANIEL ALFREDSSON, JASON SPEZZA)
    2:21
    TAM - MARTIN ST. LOUIS 23 (VINCENT LECAVALIER) 5:46
    OTT - ANTOINE VERMETTE 13 (PATRICK EAVES) 13:53
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1S

    Dec 21 9:02 PM


  • NHL
    TAMPA BAY 1
    OTTAWA 2
    2ND PRD: OTT - ANTOINE VERMETTE 13 (PATRICK EAVES) 13:53

    Lightning vs. SenatorsDec 21 8:53 PM


  • NHL
    TAMPA BAY 1
    OTTAWA 1
    2ND PRD: TAM - MARTIN ST. LOUIS 23 (VINCENT LECAVALIER) 5:46

    Lightning vs. SenatorsDec 21 8:41 PM


  • NHL
    TAMPA BAY 0
    OTTAWA 1
    2ND PRD: OTT - (PP) DANY HEATLEY 20 (DANIEL ALFREDSSON, JASON SPEZZA)
    2:21

    Lightning vs. SenatorsDec 21 8:33 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TAMPA BAY 0 0
    OTTAWA 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TAM 7 7
    OTT 5 5
    GOALIES: TAM - MARC DENIS
    OTT - RAY EMERY

    Dec 21 8:12 PM