for this game

Whitney, Crosby help Penguins rally past Capitals

Mar 28, 2007 - 7:32 AM
WASHINGTON (Ticker) -- With first place on the line, the Pittsburgh Penguins turned to defenseman Ryan Whitney to help save the day.

Whitney scored twice and Sidney Crosby added a goal and an assist as the Penguins posted a 4-3 victory over the Washington Capitals, sweeping the season series.

Rookie Evgeni Malkin had two assists and Michel Ouellet tallied for Pittsburgh (44-23-10), which remained tied with the New Jersey Devils for first place in the Atlantic Division with 96 points. The Devils beat the New York Islanders, 3-2.

The win put Pittsburgh in the playoffs for the first time since the 2000-01 season when it reached the conference finals vs. New Jersey.

"Yeah, we gotta be satisfied with this win," Penguins coach Michel Therrien said. "It's a great accomplishment for this hockey team and we were proud about clinching the playoffs, but in the meantime, it's like I want more."

After the Capitals took a 2-0 lead on first-period goals by Alexander Semin and Boyd Gordon, the Penguins used three power-play scores between the opening and second stanzas to take control of the contest.

"Special teams are a big part of the game, and power play, there's no doubt, gave us some lift tonight and gave us three goals," Therrien said. "It's important that the power play really clicked well."

Trailing, 2-1, after Ouellet banged in a rebound past goaltender Olaf Kolzig with 7:52 left in the first, Whitney knotted the score just 70 seconds into the second when he received a pass from Crosby and one-timed a shot past the Washington netminder.

Crosby collected his 35th goal of the season on the power play when he jammed in a shot between Kolzig and the right post following a scramble, giving the Penguins a 3-2 advantage at 6:21 of the second. It was the two-time All-Star's league-leading 113th point of the season.

The three power-play goals gave the Penguins a league-leading 88 tallies with a man advantage this season.

"We're confident, no doubt, when we send guys on the ice," Therrien said. "We know the power play will give us some good scoring chances. When you get so many scoring chances, you know the puck eventually will get in the net, but we're trying to keep it simple."

Whitney tallied again with 4:08 left in the period for his second multi-goal game of the season and Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 27 shots for Pittsburgh, which is 11-3-1 in its last 14 games.

As Whitney was scoring his second goal Penguins right wing Georges Laraque, who was credited with an assist on the play, dropped his gloves to duke it out with Capitals left wing Donald Brashear in a matchup of two of the toughest bruisers in the NHL.

"I've never seen anything like that," Laraque said. "I was in the corner and chipped the puck back to Ryan Malone, and then I got into the fight."

After both tough guys fell to the ice, they both were given five minute majors and sent to opposing locker rooms.

"I was really surprised that the ref didn't blow the whistle earlier," Laraque added. "I didn't even know what happened. Only when I came in the dressing room did they tell me we scored. We got really lucky on that one."

Kolzig made 25 saves for the Capitals, who have lost four straight and 18 of their last 21 games.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PITTSBURGH 1 3 0 4
    WASHINGTON 2 0 1 3 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: WAS - ALEXANDER SEMIN 38 (ALEXANDER OVECHKIN, KRIS BEECH)
    5:59
    WAS - BOYD GORDON 6 (MATT PETTINGER, CHRIS CLARK) 9:18
    PIT - (PP) MICHEL OUELLET 18 (BROOKS ORPIK, MARK RECCHI)
    12:08
    2ND PRD: PIT - (PP) RYAN WHITNEY 1

    Mar 27 9:36 PM


  • NHL
    PITTSBURGH 4
    WASHINGTON 3
    3RD PRD: WAS - MILAN JURCINA 4 (ALEXANDER SEMIN, CHRIS CLARK) 19:28

    Penguins vs. CapitalsMar 27 9:34 PM
  • 20
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 20 roots

    Penguins vs. CapitalsMar 27 9:34 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PITTSBURGH 1 3 4
    WASHINGTON 2 0 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: WAS - ALEXANDER SEMIN 38 (ALEXANDER OVECHKIN, KRIS BEECH)
    5:59
    WAS - BOYD GORDON 6 (MATT PETTINGER, CHRIS CLARK) 9:18
    PIT - (PP) MICHEL OUELLET 18 (BROOKS ORPIK, MARK RECCHI)
    12:08
    2ND PRD: PIT - (PP) R

    Mar 27 8:40 PM


  • NHL
    PITTSBURGH 4
    WASHINGTON 2
    2ND PRD: PIT - RYAN WHITNEY 13 (RYAN MALONE, GEORGES LARAQUE) 15:52

    Penguins vs. CapitalsMar 27 8:35 PM


  • NHL
    PITTSBURGH 3
    WASHINGTON 2
    2ND PRD: PIT - (PP) SIDNEY CROSBY 35 (EVGENI MALKIN, SERGEI GONCHAR)
    6:21

    Penguins vs. CapitalsMar 27 8:15 PM


  • NHL
    PITTSBURGH 2
    WASHINGTON 2
    2ND PRD: PIT - (PP) RYAN WHITNEY 12 (SIDNEY CROSBY, EVGENI MALKIN)
    1:10

    Penguins vs. CapitalsMar 27 8:06 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PITTSBURGH 1 1
    WASHINGTON 2 2 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: WAS - ALEXANDER SEMIN 38 (ALEXANDER OVECHKIN, KRIS BEECH)
    5:59
    WAS - BOYD GORDON 6 (MATT PETTINGER, CHRIS CLARK) 9:18
    PIT - (PP) MICHEL OUELLET 18 (BROOKS ORPIK, MARK RECCHI)
    12:08
    SHOTS ON GOAL:

    Mar 27 7:43 PM


  • NHL
    PITTSBURGH 1
    WASHINGTON 2
    1ST PRD: PIT - (PP) MICHEL OUELLET 18 (BROOKS ORPIK, MARK RECCHI)
    12:08

    Penguins vs. CapitalsMar 27 7:32 PM


  • NHL
    PITTSBURGH 0
    WASHINGTON 2
    1ST PRD: WAS - BOYD GORDON 6 (MATT PETTINGER, CHRIS CLARK) 9:18

    Penguins vs. CapitalsMar 27 7:25 PM


  • NHL
    PITTSBURGH 0
    WASHINGTON 1
    1ST PRD: WAS - ALEXANDER SEMIN 38 (ALEXANDER OVECHKIN, KRIS BEECH)
    5:59

    Penguins vs. CapitalsMar 27 7:20 PM