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Leclaire shines as Blue Jackets top Hurricanes

Sep 25, 2006 - 1:18 AM COLUMBUS, Ohio (Ticker) -- Pascal Leclaire looks like he's ready to reward his team's faith in him.

Leclaire made 27 saves and the Columbus Blue Jackets poured in four third-period goals to post a 4-2 preseason victory over the Carolina Hurricanes.

Rick Nash scored a pair of goals, including an empty-netter, and Dan Fritsche and Geoff Platt also tallied for Columbus.

The 23-year-old Leclaire, however, was the focus. Thrust into the starting role with the trade of Marc Denis, he played a full game for the first time in the preseason and allowed power-play goals by Justin Williams and Rod Brind'Amour.

The second-year goaltender went 11-15-3 with a 3.23 goals-against average as a rookie last season. But from January 1 on, he was 9-5-2 with a 2.85 GAA.

Williams gave Carolina a 1-0 lead at 5:11 of the second period and it held up heading into the final session.

The Blue Jackets came out and put three goals on the board in a span of 7 1/2-minutes, with Fritsche beating netminder John Grahame at 2:27 and Nash scoring an unassisted tally at 4:14.

Brind'Amour briefly tied it at 2-2 while on the man advantage at 9:03, but Platt answered 54 seconds later and Nash connected again with 18 seconds remaining.

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