Simmonds helps Flyers beat Senators 4-2
OTTAWA, Ontario (AP) Wayne Simmonds and the Philadelphia Flyers had a much more enjoyable trip to Ottawa this time around.
Simmonds had a goal and an assist, and the Flyers beat the Senators 4-2 on Tuesday night for their third consecutive victory.
''It's been nice. The last little bit we've been playing good hockey,'' Simmonds said. ''I think we're spending a lot more attention to detail and we're getting it done.''
Sean Couturier had an empty-net goal and two assists for the Flyers, who have won four of five overall. Shayne Gostisbehere and Evgeny Medvedev also scored, and Steve Mason made 23 saves.
Philadelphia also visited Ottawa on Nov. 21 and dropped a 4-0 decision for its third straight loss and second straight shutout. But it departed on Tuesday night with its first three-game winning streak of the season.
''Oh yeah, we haven't won too many in a row but we're starting to build our confidence and you can really tell everyone has got their head up,'' Flyers captain Claude Giroux said.
Zack Smith and Mike Hoffman scored for the Senators, and Craig Anderson made 29 saves. The Senators have dropped two straight after winning four in a row.
The teams traded first-period goals less than three minutes apart, with the Flyers jumping in front at 14:27 on Gostisbehere's fourth goal of the season, only to be followed by Smith's tying score at 17:17.
''I thought the first period was real good,'' Senators coach Dave Cameron said. ''The four lines were going, they were moving the puck well. We didn't generate a whole lot, but we did generate some and I was very happy with the first period.''
After taking a pass from Claude Giroux at the top of the left faceoff circle, Gostisbehere thought about shooting but instead took advantage of some space and moved toward the bottom of the circle before firing a shot over Anderson's shoulder.
Minutes later, Luke Schenn tried to wrap the puck around the boards behind his net and out of the zone but it was intercepted 10 feet inside the blue line by Cody Ceci, who fed Smith for a one-timer.
The Flyers took a 3-2 lead after two periods on goals from Medvedev and Simmonds.
Medvedev scored just as a Flyers power play came to an end. After Hoffman tied it again at 4:20, the teams played scoreless hockey for 12 minutes before Simmonds scored at 16:35, giving the Flyers their third one-goal lead of the game.
''Lately we've been closing games pretty good and not giving up too much,'' Couturier said. ''For sure, we're playing some better hockey, we trust each other more, we're playing more in the system and we're finding ways to close games. Earlier in the season we were sacred to lose games and it cost us a few points. Lately we've been doing a really good job.''
NOTES: The Senators scratched F Colin Greening and D Patrick Wiercioch. Scratches for the Flyers were Fs Vincent Lecavalier and Sam Gagner and D Nick Schultz. … Senators forward Curtis Lazar hasn't scored in his past nine games. … The Senators and Flyers won't meet again until April.
- Claude Giroux
- Luke Schenn
- Nick Schultz
- Philadelphia Flyers
- Sam Gagner
- Sean Couturier
- Shayne Gostisbehere
- Steve Mason
- Vincent Lecavalier
- Wayne Simmonds
- Yevgeni Medvedev