Tip-in by Ryan lifts Senators over Bruins 4-3 in overtime
By KYLE HIGHTOWER, AP Sports Writer
BOSTON (AP) — The Ottawa Senators needed a late rally in Game 2 to tie up their Eastern Conference quarterfinal matchup with the Boston Bruins.
In Game 3, they had to stave off a furious charge by the Bruins to regain the series lead.
Bobby Ryan scored on a tip-in on a power play 5:43 into overtime, and Ottawa recovered after giving up a three-goal lead to beat Boston 4-3 Monday night and take a 2-1 edge in the first-round series.
Just over a minute after Bruins center Riley Nash received a two-minute penalty for roughing Ryan, Ryan got free in the zone, tapping the puck in on assists by Kyle Turris and Erik Karlsson. Mike Hoffman added two goals for Ottawa, with Derick Brassard scoring the other. Craig Anderson finished with 17 saves.
“I always say that you make your money during the season, but you make your reputation in the playoffs, and right now he’s showing everybody that he’s a gamer,” Senators coach Guy Boucher said of Ryan.
It was the second straight overtime game of the series, and second consecutive win for the Senators following their 4-3 victory in Game 2.
Game 4 is Wednesday night in Boston.
This time, the Bruins rallied from a 3-0 deficit with three goals in the second period, tying the game on a power-play goal by David Pastrnak.
Noel Acciari and David Backes also scored for the Bruins. Tuukka Rask stopped 28 shots.
“We were allowed to play in the second and third (periods), we were a better team,” Pastrnak said. “We had many opportunities to end it in the third.”
Bruins fans rained sustained boos on the referees after Ryan’s goal and threw items on the TD Garden ice in protest of Nash’s penalty, which give the Senators the man advantage.
Boston interim coach Bruce Cassidy said the penalty zapped the energy from his team’s surge to tie it in regulation.
“Yeah, I agree with you 100 percent — demoralizing,” he said.
Ottawa seemed to be cruising in the second period following Hoffman’s second goal of the night off a power play to make it 3-0. But then Boston finally got going on the offensive end.
First, Acciari, who returned from injury, scored with a tip-in off a miss by John-Michael Liles. That was followed 42 seconds later by Backes’ slap shot after he broke through the defense to swipe the puck and open the ice.
Then, the Bruins finally cashed in on Pastrnak’s goal, with Dion Phaneuf in the penalty box for slashing.
It nearly nullified what was a dominant start by the Senators, who kept the action on their side of the red line for most of the first period.
The Bruins played through a rash of injuries in the first two games and were missing defensemen Adam McQuaid, Torey Krug, Brandon Carlo and Colin Miller on Monday.
Acciari and center David Krejci both returned, but Boston struggled early to find much offensive traction.
Hoffman and Brassard scored just 25 seconds apart in the first period and exploited a depleted Boston defense to give Ottawa a 2-0 lead.
The Bruins made up for their sloppy start and came out more aggressive on the offensive end in the second period, scoring three goals on just seven shots — including the two in 42 seconds — to get back into the game.
The Senators outshot the Bruins 10-3 in the first, taking advantage of several defensive breakdowns on their side of the ice.
Ottawa’s first goal of the night came after Karlsson flipped a pass behind Boston’s defense to spring Hoffman on a breakaway. Hoffman controlled the puck and easily tapped it by Rask into the right corner of the net.
Then Brassard got on the board, slipping a slap shot by Rask for his second goal in two games.
Backes had the best opportunity to score for the Bruins in first period, but his attempt to fire a glove-side shot by Anderson was wide right, striking the post.
It was the first game of the series that the Bruins had trailed after the opening 20 minutes.
“Momentums are crazy,” Anderson said. “Win your little battles and it goes a long way in the war.”
NOTES: Ottawa was 2 for 4 on power plays. … Acciari and Tommy Cross both played in their first NHL playoff games, bringing the total to 11 Bruins that have made their postseason debuts in the series.
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