for this game

Senators score early and Gerber shuts down Rangers

Oct 14, 2007 - 4:47 AM
By Larry Fleisher PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

NEW YORK (Ticker) -- The Ottawa Senators are the defending Eastern Conference champions. The New York Rangers hope to unseat them, but over the first two weeks of the young season, the Senators appear to have the upper hand.

For the second time in eight days, the Senators knocked off the Rangers as they scored three times in a span of 52 seconds during the second period and got 36 saves from Martin Gerber en route to a 3-1 victory Saturday night at Madison Square Garden.

Dany Heatley scored a power-play goal, defenseman Chris Phillips also tallied and Patrick Eaves capped the outburst for the Senators, who - including their 7-0-0 preseason - have won 13 of 14 games heading into a portion of the schedule in which they play just three times over the next 17 days.

One of those wins took place in Ottawa a week ago, when the Senators blanked the Rangers, 2-0, as Gerber made 35 saves and captain Daniel Alfredsson and defenseman Andrej Meszaros scored 53 seconds apart in the opening period.

"We've played well against them," Heatley said. "We know they're a very good team, especially with the additions they made in the summertime. They're a very offensive team, and I think in the two games we've played against them, we've played very responsible."

"The biggest thing is the two wins," Gerber added. "That's the main thing, especially winning on the road against a team like that. It's always huge for us."

Looking to rebound from Thursday's 5-3 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes, Ottawa recorded 10 of the first 14 shots of the game. The only thing that stood in its way was the outstanding play of New York goaltender Henrik Lundqvist, who stopped 15 shots in the first period and the first 20 overall by Ottawa.

"I thought the first period was as good as we played on the road this year and against the kind of opposition we're playing," Senators coach John Paddock said. "So I was pleased from start to finish."

"I think the feeling after the first period was, just keep doing what you're doing," Heatley said. "Eventually, we're going to break through. It's kind of funny that we scored three that quickly, but we felt that once we got one, more were going to come, and they did."

Ottawa finally broke through, and did so quickly. The flurry started shortly after Chris Drury took a delay-of-game penalty as Heatley converted a nice cross-ice feed from Jason Spezza with 11:37 remaining.

Just 17 seconds later, the Senators added to their lead when Phillips beat Lundqvist to the stick side with a blast from the right faceoff circle. The Senators struck again 35 seconds afterward as Eaves forced a giveaway by defenseman Marek Malik just inside Ottawa's blue line and scored on a breakaway, finishing the play with a wrist shot from the left circle.

The outburst set a new record for the fastest three goals in franchise history. The previous mark was set against the New York Islanders on March 15, when Spezza, Chris Neil and Dean McAmmond scored in a span of 76 seconds in the third period.

In the first two meetings, the Senators have outscored the Rangers, 5-1. They have won 15 of the last 18 meetings between the teams and will face New York two more times in their first 36 games.

"They're a very skilled team and you always have to respect the speed and puck control they have up front," Phillips said. "So to come out with two wins against these guys is a big step for us."

"Obviously, they have some unbelievable chemistry," Drury said. "I think we're frustrated a little bit. We're trying to find that chemistry."

Gerber made seven saves in the first period, 12 in the second and 17 in the third. He improved to 6-1-0 lifetime against the Rangers and came within 69 seconds of his ninth career shutout.

Gerber helped preserve the shutout earlier in the third by making six saves during a 5-on-3 power play for New York that was created when he was called for slashing. He made two left pad saves on Brendan Shanahan and outstanding stops on captain Jaromir Jagr and Scott Gomez.

"I was pretty happy about that," Gerber said. "It was pretty much a penalty. It shouldn't happen. So I was pretty happy about it the way we got out of it."

"He was outstanding," Paddock said. "He didn't have to be outstanding until the Rangers were given every chance in the world to win the hockey game, and then he had to be outstanding."

A night after scoring its first three power-play goals of the season, New York was 0-for-7 with the man advantage.

The Rangers finally solved Gerber when Jagr scored off a goalmouth scramble with 1:09 remaining. It was his first goal of the season and 100th as a Ranger.

"I know that we do have work to do to catch them to be on the same plateau that they are," New York coach Tom Renney said. "Let's face it, this is pretty early in the season for them, too, and they are looking pretty darn good. So we certainly have our work cut out for us."






  • 10
    roots
    Sensfan4eva Added 5 roots

    Senators 3, Rangers 1  FinalMar 4 8:31 AM


  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    OTTAWA 0 3 0 3
    NY RANGERS 0 0 1 1 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: OTT - (PP) DANY HEATLEY 6 (JASON SPEZZA, ANDREJ MESZAROS)
    8:23
    OTT - CHRIS PHILLIPS 1 (CHRIS KELLY, ANTOINE VERMETTE) 8:40
    OTT - PATRICK EAVES 1 (UNASSISTED) 9:15
    3RD PRD: NYR - JAROMIR JAGR 1 (SCOTT GO

    Oct 13 9:34 PM


  • NHL
    OTTAWA 3
    NY RANGERS 1 1:09 LEFT, 3RD PRD

    Senators vs. RangersOct 13 9:32 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    OTTAWA 0 3 3
    NY RANGERS 0 0 0 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: OTT - (PP) DANY HEATLEY 6 (JASON SPEZZA, ANDREJ MESZAROS)
    8:23
    OTT - CHRIS PHILLIPS 1 (CHRIS KELLY, ANTOINE VERMETTE) 8:40
    OTT - PATRICK EAVES 1 (UNASSISTED) 9:15
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST

    Oct 13 8:37 PM


  • NHL
    OTTAWA 3
    NY RANGERS 0
    2ND PRD: OTT - PATRICK EAVES 1 (UNASSISTED) 9:15

    Senators vs. RangersOct 13 8:16 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    OTTAWA 0 0
    NY RANGERS 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    OTT 15 15
    NYR 7 7
    GOALIES: OTT - MARTIN GERBER
    NYR - HENRIK LUNDQVIST

    Oct 13 7:39 PM
  • 5
    roots
    six4three Added 5 roots

    Senators vs. RangersOct 13 10:25 AM