for this game

Zhitnik leads Flyers past Hurricanes

Jan 1, 2007 - 5:41 AM
RALEIGH, North Carolina (Ticker) - Defenseman Alexei Zhitnik and the Philadelphia Flyers liked the idea of winning so much, they decided to do it again.

Zhitnik scored the decisive goal and Ryan Potulny and Kyle Calder added insurance tallies as the Flyers posted a 5-2 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes.

Simon Gagne scored the game's initial goal and Mike Knuble netted his 150th career tally on an empty netter for Philadelphia, which earned its second straight win after a franchise-record 10-game losing streak.

"It was a tough time losing all those games," Flyers left wing Todd Fedoruk said. "To have back-to-back wins and back-to-back games where we were consistent in our work ethic is key. It is something to look forward to."

On Friday, the Flyers recorded a 4-3 triumph over the Tampa Bay Lightning for their first victory since November 30.

"We've got to find ways to win which we weren't doing at the beginning of the year," Calder said. "We're now finding ways to win."

Zhitnik gave the Flyers a 2-1 lead with 13 seconds left in the second period when he took advantage of Peter Forsberg's screen in front of Carolina goalkeeper Cam Ward. His shot beat Ward to the stick side from the slot.

Ryan Potulny widened the margin for the Flyers five minutes into the third session when the puck took an odd bounce out of the corner. Fedoruk made a pass to the hard-charging Potulny, who blasted a shot past an outstretched Ward.

Just 85 seconds later, Calder netted a breakaway goal to give Philadelphia a three-goal advantage when he faked Ward before before taking a forehand shot.

"It was just a move that I had and it worked out," Calder said.

Knuble tallied his milestone goal with 49 seconds left after Carolina pulled Ward.

After setting a career-high with 42 saves against Tampa Bay on Friday, Robert Esche stopped 40 shots to remain unbeaten in three decisions against Carolina.

"I think we're competing a little harder and I don't think to a man we've been doing that this year," Esche said. "It's a start and it is a lot easier learning when you're winning than losing."

"Esche has faced almost a hundred shots in the last two games, so he's a big part of our wins right now," Fedoruk said.

Ray Whitney scored twice and Ward made 14 saves for the Hurricanes, who committed nine penalties and were just 1-for-7 on the power play.

"I certainly don't think we played a bad game," Whitney said. "We pretty much gave them all four goals. Some of them were unlucky. The second one I thought was interference on Ward.

"But sometimes you get those calls and sometimes you don't. The third one, to bounce off the boards like that, was unfortunate. Robert Esche played very well tonight."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHILADELPHIA 1 1 3 5
    CAROLINA 0 1 1 2 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: PHI - SIMON GAGNE 20 (PETER FORSBERG, JONI PITKANEN) 18:37
    2ND PRD: CAR - (PP) RAY WHITNEY 15 (ERIC BELANGER, DAVID TANABE)
    11:11
    PHI - ALEXEI ZHITNIK 4 (TODD FEDORUK, PETER FORSBERG) 19:47
    3RD PRD: PHI - RYAN POTULN

    Dec 31 10:38 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 5
    CAROLINA 2
    3RD PRD: PHI - (EN) MIKE KNUBLE 15 (PETER FORSBERG) 19:11

    Flyers vs. HurricanesDec 31 10:32 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 4
    CAROLINA 2
    3RD PRD: CAR - RAY WHITNEY 16 (ERIC BELANGER, ROD BRIND'AMOUR) 8:14

    Flyers vs. HurricanesDec 31 10:14 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 4
    CAROLINA 1
    3RD PRD: PHI - KYLE CALDER 4 (JEFF CARTER) 6:23

    Flyers vs. HurricanesDec 31 10:08 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 3
    CAROLINA 1
    3RD PRD: PHI - RYAN POTULNY 2 (TODD FEDORUK, BEN EAGER) 4:58

    Flyers vs. HurricanesDec 31 10:07 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHILADELPHIA 1 1 2
    CAROLINA 0 1 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: PHI - SIMON GAGNE 20 (PETER FORSBERG, JONI PITKANEN) 18:37
    2ND PRD: CAR - (PP) RAY WHITNEY 15 (ERIC BELANGER, DAVID TANABE)
    11:11
    PHI - ALEXEI ZHITNIK 4 (UNASSISTED) 19:47
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND

    Dec 31 9:43 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 2
    CAROLINA 1
    2ND PRD: PHI - ALEXEI ZHITNIK 4 (UNASSISTED) 19:47

    Flyers vs. HurricanesDec 31 9:42 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 1
    CAROLINA 1
    2ND PRD: CAR - (PP) RAY WHITNEY 15 (ERIC BELANGER, DAVID TANABE) 11:11

    Flyers vs. HurricanesDec 31 9:25 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHILADELPHIA 1 1
    CAROLINA 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: PHI - SIMON GAGNE 20 (PETER FORSBERG, JONI PITKANEN) 18:37
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHI 10 10
    CAR 12 12
    GOALIES: PHI - ROBERT ESCHE
    C

    Dec 31 8:46 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 1
    CAROLINA 0
    1ST PRD: PHI - SIMON GAGNE 20 (PETER FORSBERG, JONI PITKANEN) 18:37

    Flyers vs. HurricanesDec 31 8:46 PM