Flyers Continue Winning Ways; Defeat Senators 5-2
The Philadelphia Flyers just keep on rolling.
Behind another strong performance by Steve Mason and an offensive outburst, the Flyers were able to extend their point streak to five games and have now collected 12 of 16 possible points in their last eight games.
In fact, since the disastrous 7-0 loss at the hands of the Washington Capitals on Nov. 1, the Flyers have gone 5-1-2 and now sit just two points back from what would have them in playoff positioning.
Of course, it’s too early to talk about the playoffs at this point in the season; however, after a subpar start to the season, the Flyers seem to be turning it around.
The Flyers kept it going Tuesday night with a 5-2 win over Ottawa, their second win against the Senators in a week.
Claude Giroux was able to start the scoring late in the first on a powerplay goal. The goal was Giroux’s second on the season and also his second in five games since he broke his goalless drought.
The goal came after a beautiful cross-ice pass from Jakub Voracek, who was the best player on the ice for either team. Voracek was getting to loose pucks quickly, creating scoring chances and it felt like he was on the ice every time the puck entered the Ottawa zone.
Giroux wasn’t the only Flyer to end a scoring drought recently; three Flyers did it against Ottawa.
Sean Couturier was able to make it 2-0 5:18 into the second period when he threw a bad angle shot on net that somehow squeezed by Senators goaltender Robin Lehner. The goal was Couturier’s first in 25 games and hopefully what he needed to get some confidence back in his game.
The Flyers were seemingly in control of the game at this point until Brayden Schenn took a tripping penalty. Clarke MacArthur made him pay with a beautiful wrist shot and cut the lead in half.
MacArthur almost had another one late in the second period but Mason made a spectacular post-to-post save to rob him on the backhand attempt. In total, Mason made 32 saves on 34 shots.
The Flyers allowed their second powerplay goal for the second straight game and their fifth total in their last three games when Kyle Turris was able to tie it up early in the third. This came after Zac Rinaldo was called for a hook, which on further review appeared to be a soft call.
That’s as close as Ottawa would get for the rest of the game.
Kimmo Timonen scored what would turn out to be the game winner on a sharp backhand 11:30 into the third period, his first goal since April 16, a stretch of 21 games. He added two assists in what was the aging defenseman’s best game so far this season.
The goal came just minutes after the Senators had a possible goal waived off after a long video review. The puck glanced off of Nicklas Grossmann’s skate right along the goal line, however video evidence proved to be inconclusive and the call on the ice of no goal stood.
Wayne Simmonds added an insurance goal just 23 seconds later and that was all the Flyers would need.
Kyle Turris had a chance to make it a one goal game with just over five minutes to go after he was hauled down by Timonen on a breakaway, but Mason made another huge stop to preserve the two goal lead.
With time running down, Ottawa pulled Lehner and after Braydon Coburn was penalized for delay of game, had 51 seconds of two-man advantage time to try and score.
Adam Hall made sure they didn’t as he collected a pass off a shot block from Grossmann, skated out to center ice and bounced it home into the empty net. This ended another goalless drought, as it was Hall’s first goal since Feb. 28, 2012.
Hall was spectacular all night, winning 85 percent of the face-offs he took.
The win was a good thing for the Flyers as they begin a three game home stand against teams at or below .500. The Flyers hope they can sweep the three games and keep the momentum going to get themselves back to .500.