for this game

Stillman's hat trick powers Hurricanes over Capitals

Nov 6, 2007 - 4:06 AM
By Joe Johnson PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

RALEIGH, North Carolina (Ticker) - The Carolina Hurricanes' power play has been lethal lately, and the Washington Capitals were the most recent victims.

Cory Stillman scored a natural hat trick in the first 12 minutes and Eric Staal added a pair to lead Carolina to a 5-0 victory Monday night.

Goaltender Cam Ward recorded his third career regular-season shutout - all against the Capitals - and fifth overall for the Hurricanes.

Carolina has won five of its last seven games.

"The team's winning, we're producing, we have confidence, we have confidence with the puck," Stillman said. "Then it ends up showing on the stat sheet after you have a win."

Washington's troubles started early as defenseman Milan Jurcina and left wing Alex Ovechkin picked up penalties in the first seven minutes.

It took only four seconds into the first power play and 18 seconds into the second for Stillman to convert. Carolina went 3-of-7 on the man advantage while holding Washington to 0-of-4 on the power play.

"They've got a very strong unit on the power play," Washington left wing Matt Pettinger said. "We've struggled with our discipline throughout the year. It was a tough game. It was a tough start. They came out real strong."

Stillman became the second player in franchise history to record a first-period hat trick. Ron Francis had the other in 1985, when the team was in Hartford, Connecticut and the Whalers beat Montreal, 11-6, in Patrick Roy's second game in goal for the Canadiens.

Stillman's first two goals came on the power play en route to his fourth career hat trick. His last occurred on January 5, 2002, against Dallas when he was with St. Louis.

The first goal came when Rod Brind'Amour won a faceoff and sent the puck to Ray Whitney along the left boards, who fired it back to Brind'Amour and over to Stillman on the right side of the goal. Stillman slapped a one-timer past Olaf Kolzig for a 1-0 advantage 4:23 into the contest.

"We had sort of discussed it before the puck dropped on the play," Stillman said. "I was more or less just told to go stand over there. The other guys had said that, if we win the draw, this is what's going to happen. It worked."

Less than three minutes later, Stillman, who owns an eight-game scoring streak, worked a give-and-go with Whitney and beat Kolzig up the middle.

Stillman's last tally was perhaps the most impressive. On a 2-on-1 break, Erik Cole faked a slap shot from the point and passed to Stillman, who slipped the puck past Kolzig's outstretched right leg as he was flying past the net.

"The power play was moving well and (Stillman) was on the receiving end of some nice plays," Carolina coach Peter Laviolette said. "On any night I think it's anybody that can pop out."

After the game, Stillman said he could not remember his last natural hat trick.

Carolina, with the second-best power play in the NHL, has gotten multiple goals with the man advantage in three of their last four games, each of which have ended in wins.

"Three power-play goals against took away some of our momentum," Washington coach Glen Hanlon said. "I thought we had a good start to the game. We had a little miscue on the first power-play goal. The kills, the penalties set us back. I think we certainly had opportunities not to be shut out. We had opportunities to score."

Washington actually outshot the Hurricanes, 19-10, in the first period. But Carolina's defense clamped down on the Capitals, holding Washington to 16 shots the rest of the way.

"It always seems like when I've got zeroes across the board that one gets on me late," said Ward, who finished with 35 saves. "I really wanted to bear down in the third period and really finish the deal."

Ward did, but one of his toughest saves came in the first period when he withstood a near point-blank shot from Ovechkin in the slot.

"It definitely helps the confidence to get into the game," Ward said. "You never want to start out with a 2-on-1 with one of the more dangerous guys in the league coming down on you, but if you make that save it definitely helps the confidence."

Staal became the first Carolina player to reach double digits in goals, deflecting Matt Cullen's blast with less than four minutes left in the second period. It also was on the power play after Washington's Donald Brashear picked up a major boarding penalty and a game misconduct.

Staal's second goal came two minutes into the third period and it chased Kolzig, who faced 24 shots and made 19 saves. Kolzig lost his third straight to fall to 4-6.

Kolzig did not get much help from his defense, however. The Capitals are without blue-liners Steve Eminger, who has missed the last 14 games, and Tom Poti, who was out with a groin injury.

Washington had shut out Carolina, 2-0, in their first meeting of the season on October 6. But since winning three straight to start the season, the Capitals have lost nine of their last 11.

"Anytime you go on a streak like this losing, it's never fun," Pettinger said. "It's still early but we have to do something to right this ship. It's tough to come back in this league."

Ovechkin almost hit Pettinger on the right cheek with a rising wrist shot midway through the second period. The Capitals already lost Chris Clark with an ear laceration after he was struck by an Ovechkin shot on Oct. 27.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    WASHINGTON 0 0 0 0
    CAROLINA 3 1 1 5 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: CAR - (PP) CORY STILLMAN 6 (ROD BRIND'AMOUR, RAY WHITNEY)
    4:23
    CAR - (PP) CORY STILLMAN 7 (RAY WHITNEY, MATT CULLEN) 7:14
    CAR - CORY STILLMAN 8 (ERIK COLE, ERIC STAAL) 11:28
    2ND PRD: CAR - (PP) ERIC STAAL 10 (MATT CU

    Nov 5 9:36 PM


  • NHL
    WASHINGTON 0
    CAROLINA 5
    3RD PRD: CAR - ERIC STAAL 11 (CORY STILLMAN, TIM GLEASON) 2:01

    Capitals vs. HurricanesNov 5 9:06 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    WASHINGTON 0 0 0
    CAROLINA 3 1 4 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: CAR - (PP) CORY STILLMAN 6 (ROD BRIND'AMOUR, RAY WHITNEY)
    4:23
    CAR - (PP) CORY STILLMAN 7 (RAY WHITNEY, MATT CULLEN) 7:14
    CAR - CORY STILLMAN 8 (ERIK COLE, ERIC STAAL) 11:28
    2ND PRD: CAR - (PP) ERIC STAA

    Nov 5 8:43 PM


  • NHL
    WASHINGTON 0
    CAROLINA 4
    2ND PRD: CAR - (PP) ERIC STAAL 10 (MATT CULLEN, JUSTIN WILLIAMS) 16:07

    Capitals vs. HurricanesNov 5 8:37 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    WASHINGTON 0 0
    CAROLINA 3 3 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: CAR - (PP) CORY STILLMAN 6 (ROD BRIND'AMOUR, RAY WHITNEY)
    4:23
    CAR - (PP) CORY STILLMAN 7 (RAY WHITNEY, MATT CULLEN) 7:14
    CAR - CORY STILLMAN 8 (ERIK COLE, ERIC STAAL) 11:28
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2N

    Nov 5 7:48 PM


  • NHL
    WASHINGTON 0
    CAROLINA 3
    1ST PRD: CAR - CORY STILLMAN 8 (ERIK COLE, ERIC STAAL) 11:28

    Capitals vs. HurricanesNov 5 7:34 PM


  • NHL
    WASHINGTON 0
    CAROLINA 2
    1ST PRD: CAR - (PP) CORY STILLMAN 7 (RAY WHITNEY, MATT CULLEN) 7:14

    Capitals vs. HurricanesNov 5 7:25 PM


  • NHL
    WASHINGTON 0
    CAROLINA 1
    1ST PRD: CAR - (PP) CORY STILLMAN 6 (ROD BRIND'AMOUR, RAY WHITNEY)
    4:23

    Capitals vs. HurricanesNov 5 7:19 PM
  • 5
    roots
    ncstatefan Added 5 roots

    Capitals vs. HurricanesNov 5 4:39 PM