for this game

Spezza, Gerber help Senators keep pace with Canadiens

Mar 21, 2008 - 4:19 AM
OTTAWA (Ticker) -- All-Star Jason Spezza and the Ottawa Senators bounced back from a lopsided loss against a team spiraling downward.

Spezza snapped a tie at 7:39 of the second period and Martin Gerber stopped 24 shots as the Senators edged the St. Louis Blues, 3-2, on Thursday.

Antoine Vermette and defenseman Christoph Schubert also scored for Ottawa (41-26-7), which rebounded from a 5-1 loss to Carolina on Sunday and remained three points behind Montreal (41-24-10) for the top spot in the Northeast Division.

The Canadiens posted a 4-2 victory over the Boston Bruins on Thursday.

"It doesn't matter who you beat this time of year," Spezza said. "Every win is huge. So it's nice to be able to come home after losing on the road Sunday and get a win here in our own building."

"We know where we are in the standings, and we're in as tight a battle as I've ever seen," Ottawa captain Daniel Alfredsson said. "We just want to win as many as we can between now and the end of the season and make sure we end on a strong note going into the playoffs."

Jamal Mayers and defenseman Jeff Woywitka tallied for the Blues, who fell to 1-6-1 in their last eight games and are near the bottom of the league with 71 points.

"You measure success in this league by wins and points, and tonight, we weren't good enough," Blues coach Andy Murray said. "Whether you're a playoff team or not, you want to play hard and win. We came up short against a good team that knows they have to win to keep pace with their rivals in the standings."

Spezza netted the game-winning goal after an action-packed opening period. He received a pass from Dany Heatley and fired a shot past the left pad of goaltender Hannu Toivonen his 31st goal of the season and a 3-2 lead.

"It was a great pass from (Heatley)," Spezza said. "I just went to the net knowing he'd get it to me there, and when he did, I just had to tap it in. It was one of the those bang-bang plays that's tough for a goalie to do anything about.

"We're happy to get the two points tonight. But but we know there's a logjam in the race for the top spot of both the division and the conference, so every night is like a playoff game."

Ottawa got off to a fast start as Vermette scored his 18th just 2:06 into the game. But St. Louis jumped ahead as Mayers and Woywitka scored 2:44 apart midway through the first.

Mayers tied the game at 1-1 by tipping a pass from defenseman Barret Jackman past the left pad of Gerber. Woywitka put St. Louis in front when he redirected a pass from Keith Tkachuk into the right side of the net.

The Senators evened the contest at 2-2 just over four minutes later, when Schubert netted his seventh goal of the season with 3:43 left in the period.

Schubert received a pass from Dean McAmmond and one-timed a shot from the top of the slot that beat Toivonen low to the glove side.

"I didn't get good wood on it, and I think that may have fooled (Toivonen) a little bit," Schubert said. "But if it goes in the net, we'll take it."

Toivonen stopped 21 shots for St. Louis, which has lost five of its last seven meetings with Ottawa.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ST LOUIS 2 0 0 2
    OTTAWA 2 1 0 3 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: OTT - ANTOINE VERMETTE 18 (CHRIS KELLY, ANTON VOLCHENKOV)
    2:06
    STL - JAMAL MAYERS 11 (BARRET JACKMAN, JAY MCCLEMENT) 9:29
    STL - JEFF WOYWITKA 2 (KEITH TKACHUK, YAN STASTNY) 12:13
    OTT - CHRISTOPH SCHUBERT 7 (DEAN MCAM

    Mar 20 9:59 PM
  • 40
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 15 roots (Close Finish)

    Blues 2, Senators 3  3rd - 1:55Mar 20 9:55 PM
  • 25
    roots
    bigbelly Added 5 roots

    Blues 2, Senators 3  3rd - 19:55Mar 20 9:37 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ST LOUIS 2 0 2
    OTTAWA 2 1 3 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: OTT - ANTOINE VERMETTE 18 (CHRIS KELLY, ANTON VOLCHENKOV)
    2:06
    STL - JAMAL MAYERS 11 (BARRET JACKMAN, JAY MCCLEMENT) 9:29
    STL - JEFF WOYWITKA 2 (KEITH TKACHUK, YAN STASTNY) 12:13
    OTT - CHRISTOPH SCHUBERT

    Mar 20 9:05 PM


  • NHL
    ST LOUIS 2
    OTTAWA 3
    2ND PRD: OTT - JASON SPEZZA 31 (DANY HEATLEY, RANDY ROBITAILLE) 7:39

    Blues 2, Senators 3  2nd - 12:21Mar 20 8:44 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ST LOUIS 2 2
    OTTAWA 2 2 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: OTT - ANTOINE VERMETTE 18 (CHRIS KELLY, ANTON VOLCHENKOV)
    2:06
    STL - JAMAL MAYERS 11 (BARRET JACKMAN, JAY MCCLEMENT) 9:29
    STL - JEFF WOYWITKA 2 (KEITH TKACHUK, YAN STASTNY) 12:13
    OTT - CHRISTOPH SCHUBERT

    Mar 20 8:12 PM


  • NHL
    ST LOUIS 2
    OTTAWA 2
    1ST PRD: OTT - CHRISTOPH SCHUBERT 7 (DEAN MCAMMOND, SHEAN DONOVAN)
    16:17

    Blues 2, Senators 2  1st - 3:43Mar 20 8:06 PM


  • NHL
    ST LOUIS 2
    OTTAWA 1
    1ST PRD: STL - JEFF WOYWITKA 2 (KEITH TKACHUK, YAN STASTNY) 12:13

    Blues 2, Senators 1  1st - 7:47Mar 20 8:00 PM


  • NHL
    ST LOUIS 1
    OTTAWA 1
    1ST PRD: STL - JAMAL MAYERS 11 (BARRET JACKMAN, JAY MCCLEMENT) 9:29

    Blues 1, Senators 1  1st - 10:31Mar 20 7:54 PM


  • NHL
    ST LOUIS 0
    OTTAWA 1
    1ST PRD: OTT - ANTOINE VERMETTE 18 (CHRIS KELLY, ANTON VOLCHENKOV)
    2:06

    Blues 0, Senators 1  1st - 17:54Mar 20 7:42 PM
  • 20
    roots
    Nuno Added 5 roots

    Blues vs. SenatorsMar 20 7:30 PM
  • 15
    roots
    mrman226 Added 5 roots

    Blues vs. SenatorsMar 20 6:17 AM
  • 10
    roots
    sensfaninohio Added 5 roots

    Blues vs. SenatorsMar 9 5:06 PM
  • 5
    roots
    Sensfan4eva Added 5 roots

    Blues vs. SenatorsMar 4 8:29 AM