For the second time in five days, Sean Monahan got the decisive goal in a shootout to give the Calgary Flames a win.
Monahan scored in the sixth round of the shootout to lift the Flames to a 4-3 win over the Florida Panthers on Friday night. He scored in the eighth round on Monday night to give Calgary a 5-4 win at Winnipeg.
”We’ve got to dig deep,” said Monahan, who has eight goals and six assists in 23 games so far in his rookie season. ”We’re trying to do whatever we can to get points right now. It feels good. We want wins.”
Monahan snapped a hard shot just inside the far post over the right pad of Florida goalie Tim Thomas to earn Calgary the win.
”Just kind of outwaiting the goalie and shooting hard,” Monahan said. ”It’s something I tried to do and it worked.”
Joe Colborne had a goal and an assist in regulation for his first multiple-point game with the Flames since being acquired from Toronto in the offseason.
”It’s nice just to get a few wins in here and lighten the mood a bit,” said Colborne, who also scored on Wednesday during Calgary’s 2-1 overtime loss at home to Columbus. ”We have obviously a very proud group in here. It’s nice to have some music going in the dressing room and some guys who are smiling again. It’s just a big team win.”
Sven Baertschi and Blair Jones also scored for Calgary, which has secured at least one point in three straight games (2-0-1).
Flames goalie Reto Berra stopped 23 shots while playing in his sixth straight game. After giving up goals to Brad Boyes and Tomas Fleischmann earlier in the shootout, Berra stopped Florida forward Nick Bjugstad in the sixth round to preserve the victory.
Jiri Hudler and Michael Cammalleri also scored in the shootout for Calgary.
Tom Gilbert, Jimmy Hayes and Marcel Goc scored in regulation for the Panthers, who finished up their five-game road at 2-2-1.
”I’ve got to be real proud of the way the guys reacted,” Florida coach Peter Horachek said. ”Good road trip. From that standpoint, going .500 and all tough games, I think that’s really positive.”
Veteran goalie Tim Thomas, who played in his eighth straight game, finished with 21 saves for the Panthers.
”We showed a lot of character and a lot of good things, which we’ve done in the past and we did it again,” Thomas said of Florida’s comeback. ”When I see the team responding and stepping up like that I want them to get the two points.”
Jones, making his season debut a day after being called up from Abbotsford of the AHL, scored the third of Calgary’s three straight goals to put the Flames ahead 3-1 at 5:40 of the third period.
Hayes cut pulled them within one just 82 seconds later, taking advantage of a turnover by Berra to score his first of the season. Berra ventured out of his net in an attempt to poke check the puck away from Florida forward Shawn Matthias, but it went right to Hayes, who shot it into a wide-open net.
Goc tied the score at 3-all with 5:59 left in the third period when he outwaited Berra before snapping a shot that sneaked under the Calgary goalie’s left arm and into the net.
”They seem to respond every time,” Horachek said. ”We wanted to come back out in the third and do what we have to do and they scored and (we) didn’t drop their heads.”
Neither team mustered a shot on net until about 5 1/2 minutes into the game when Thomas easily stopped and smothered a point blast off the stick of Calgary defenseman Chris Butler.
Brian McGrattan had the best scoring chance of the opening period for the Flames when he one-timed a pass from Mikael Backlund that hit a defenseman’s stick and deflected up and over the Florida net.
The Panthers took a 1-0 lead with 4:46 remaining in the first on Gilbert’s first goal of the season. Bjugstad won the faceoff back to Gilbert, who let go a shot from the point through traffic that fooled Berra and found the back of the net.
Colborne scored his third of the season at 9:00 of the second to tie the score. Lance Bouma did a good job of forechecking to force Florida defenseman Mike Mottau to turn the puck over. The puck bounced off of Calgary forward David Jones right to Colborne, who wired a perfect shot from the slot into the top corner over Thomas’ outstretched glove.
”It was more of a reaction,” Colborne said. ”When you get a puck in that area, you don’t have much time and I just got it on my stick and tried to get it in the top corner.”
Baertschi then broke out of a 15-game goal-scoring drought when he scored a power-play goal with 7:56 left in the the second to put the Flames up 2-1.
NOTES: Blair Jones had eight goals and 13 assists for a team-leading 21 points in 16 games with Abbotsford. … T.J. Galiardi, who has gone 20 games without scoring a goal, was a healthy scratch for the Flames. … It was the fifth consecutive game for the Flames against a team that had played the night before. … Calgary has been in 14 one-goal games this season going 7-3-4.