for this game

Hartnell's hat trick highlights Flyers' rally

Jan 11, 2008 - 5:31 AM
By Larry Fleisher PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

NEW YORK (Ticker) -- Scott Hartnell finally is proving his worth with the Philadelphia Flyers.

Hartnell recorded his second career hat trick and Simon Gagne tallied in his return to the lineup as the Flyers overcame an early two-goal deficit to post a 6-2 victory over the New York Rangers on Thursday night.

Signed to a six-year, $25.2 million contract after having his rights acquired from Nashville this past summer, Hartnell entered the contest with just seven goals and 17 points in 38 games. But after tallying in the Flyers' 4-1 triumph over the Atlanta Thrashers on Tuesday, the 25-year-old former first-round pick came up with a superb effort against the Rangers.

"It's nice to get a hat trick," Hartnell said. "It probably would have been cooler at home. You have the hats flying on the ice, but I'll take (the goals) when I can get them. It's just a great feeling. Nothing better than that."

The effort marked the first time this season Hartnell has tallied in consecutive games. He has six points in his last two contests.

"Hartsie's been a good player," Philadelphia coach John Stevens said. "He never got discouraged. He's a scoring player that didn't score as much as he wanted to, but he never stopped working.

"I think that's important for any player. You keep working and doing the little things well. He was getting chances, he just wasn't putting them in. Now he's starting to capitalize on them."

With the game even at 2-2, Hartnell gathered the puck in the left corner and fired it toward the net from an impossible angle. The puck caromed off the left skate of goaltender Henrik Lundqvist and into the net at 10:42, giving Philadelphia a lead it would not relinquish.

Hartnell doubled the advantage during a power play at 1:54 of the third, batting in a bouncing puck from the low slot. He then scored on a breakaway at 8:49 moments after Petr Prucha hit the goalpost on the other end of the ice, completing his natural hat trick and giving the Flyers a 5-2 bulge.

"Hockey's a weird thing," Hartnell said. "Confidence is a weird thing on the ice, too. When you get a goal, they seem to come in bunches, and tonight was no different. I was just around the net banging pucks.

"That first one was a lucky one. I'll take those any day of the week. And the third one, I made a nice move and put it in."

Gagne, who missed 26 games with a concussion, capped the scoring with five minutes remaining, burying a shot from the bottom of the left faceoff circle off a feed from behind the net by Daniel Briere.

"I felt very good, especially when you win here in New York," said Gagne, who had not played since November 7. "It's always a good feeling. It's easier a little bit when you come back and you get that first one in the first game. It's helping, I think mentally and physically, to feel better in the next game."

Mike Richards collected three assists, Briere and Steve Downie each set up a pair of tallies and Antero Niittymaki made 39 saves en route to his fourth straight victory for Philadelphia, which has won three consecutive games and concluded an impressive 5-1-0 road trip.

"If you survive the first 15 minutes, you're going to be fine," Niittymaki said. "We knew we were going to score some goals because we had some opportunities there."

The triumph was the Flyers' 22nd of the season, equaling their total from 2006-07.

"We're winning, that's the main thing, and getting guys back off injuries," Hartnell said. "Putting the puck in the net, there's nothing better than that. Everyone's playing great."

Ryan Hollweg netted his first two goals of the campaign over a span of 2:59 in the first period to give New York a 2-0 lead. But former Ranger Mike Knuble began Philadelphia's rally with a 5-on-3 tally just 40 seconds into the second session, and Stefan Ruzicka scored his first of the campaign just over eight minutes later to knot the contest.

Defenseman Daniel Girardi set up both tallies and Lundqvist turned aside 24 shots for the Rangers, who had their season-high losing streak reach five games. They also fell for just the second time in regulation when leading after one period (12-2-3).

"I don't know what happened," Lundqvist said. "We were off to a really good start. They came back with a 5-on-3 and got some energy. After that, I don't know. It slipped out of our hands and we never got back."

"We are where we are," New York coach Tom Renney said. "We handed this game over. Really, that's all that matters. Even on our West Coast trip, we handled that better. We lost games we thought we could have won. Tonight, we had no chance."

Hollweg ended a 68-game drought at 4:43 of the first period and completed his first career two-goal game at 7:42. But after the rugged forward scored for just the fifth time in 173 career contests, the Flyers began to assert themselves during a lengthy two-man advantage that carried over into the middle session thanks to three penalties in an 85-second span by the Rangers.

Two nights after tallying four times in the second period against Atlanta, Philadelphia struck early in the session in this one as Knuble tipped Richards' slap shot from the left faceoff circle past Lundqvist.

"It's just a focus and mind set to get ready for the game," Hartnell said. "It seems like the first period, we didn't play that great, but the second period was huge and we've just been playing well."

"It's just a matter of staying with the game plan," Stevens added. "Not getting discouraged, just keep playing and doing all the right things. I thought we did that tonight."

Ruzicka tied it after a miscue behind the net by Lundqvist, who elected not to play a dump-in. Jim Dowd raced in and dished to Ruzicka, who buried a shot from the slot at 8:45.

After that, the game belonged to Hartnell, whose other career hat trick came on February 4, 2006 against Chicago.






  • 15
    roots
    SuketoKetchi Added 5 roots

    Flyers vs. RangersJan 10 9:49 PM


  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHILADELPHIA 0 3 3 6
    NY RANGERS 2 0 0 2 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYR - RYAN HOLLWEG 1 (BLAIR BETTS, DAN GIRARDI) 4:43
    NYR - RYAN HOLLWEG 2 (DAN GIRARDI) 7:42
    2ND PRD: PHI - (PP) MIKE KNUBLE 12 (MIKE RICHARDS, DANIEL BRIERE)
    0:40
    PHI - STEFAN RUZICKA 1 (JIM DOWD, KIMMO TIMONEN) 8:4

    Jan 10 9:34 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 6
    NY RANGERS 2
    3RD PRD: PHI - (PP) SIMON GAGNE 5 (DANIEL BRIERE, MIKE RICHARDS) 15:00

    Flyers vs. RangersJan 10 9:26 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 5
    NY RANGERS 2
    3RD PRD: PHI - SCOTT HARTNELL 10 (STEVE DOWNIE) 8:49

    Flyers vs. RangersJan 10 9:15 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 4
    NY RANGERS 2
    3RD PRD: PHI - SCOTT HARTNELL 9 (JEFF CARTER, R.J. UMBERGER) 1:54

    Flyers vs. RangersJan 10 9:02 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHILADELPHIA 0 3 3
    NY RANGERS 2 0 2 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYR - RYAN HOLLWEG 1 (BLAIR BETTS, DAN GIRARDI) 4:43
    NYR - RYAN HOLLWEG 2 (DAN GIRARDI) 7:42
    2ND PRD: PHI - (PP) MIKE KNUBLE 12 (MIKE RICHARDS, DANIEL BRIERE)
    0:40
    PHI - STEFAN RUZICKA 1 (JIM DOWD, KIMMO

    Jan 10 8:42 PM
  • 10
    roots
    McTool Added 5 roots

    Flyers vs. RangersJan 10 8:36 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 3
    NY RANGERS 2
    2ND PRD: PHI - SCOTT HARTNELL 8 (STEVE DOWNIE) 10:42

    Flyers vs. RangersJan 10 8:26 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 2
    NY RANGERS 2
    2ND PRD: PHI - STEFAN RUZICKA 1 (JIM DOWD, KIMMO TIMONEN) 8:45

    Flyers vs. RangersJan 10 8:20 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 1
    NY RANGERS 2
    2ND PRD: PHI - (PP) MIKE KNUBLE 12 (MIKE RICHARDS, DANIEL BRIERE) 0:40

    Flyers vs. RangersJan 10 8:07 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHILADELPHIA 0 0
    NY RANGERS 2 2 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYR - RYAN HOLLWEG 1 (BLAIR BETTS, DAN GIRARDI) 4:43
    NYR - RYAN HOLLWEG 2 (DAN GIRARDI) 7:42
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHI 13 13
    NYR 17

    Jan 10 7:47 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 0
    NY RANGERS 2
    1ST PRD: NYR - RYAN HOLLWEG 2 (DAN GIRARDI) 7:42

    Flyers vs. RangersJan 10 7:23 PM


  • NHL
    PHILADELPHIA 0
    NY RANGERS 1
    1ST PRD: NYR - RYAN HOLLWEG 1 (BLAIR BETTS, DAN GIRARDI) 4:43

    Flyers vs. RangersJan 10 7:16 PM
  • 5
    roots
    metsfan31 Added 5 roots

    Flyers vs. RangersJan 10 7:46 AM