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Pens top Canes in shootout

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Sidney Crosby had four points in a 5-4 shootout win for the Penguins. Kris Letang and Sidney Crosby scored in the shootout and Marc-Andre Fleury stopped both Carolina shooters he faced to earn the win.

Penguins 5 – Hurricanes 4

Consol Energy Center, Pittsburgh

Sidney Crosby had four points in a 5-4 shootout win for the Penguins. Kris Letang and Sidney Crosby scored in the shootout and Marc-Andre Fleury stopped both Carolina shooters he faced to earn the win. Until the Pens pulled ahead in the shootout, the Hurricanes and Penguins traded goals the entire game, with neither team able to maintain their one-goal leads. Kris Letang’s shootout marker was the difference, and the Pens improved to 5-5-1 at the Consol Energy Center.

GAME FLOW

The Hurricanes stormed out to a fast start, with Brandon Sutter scoring only 42 seconds into the game. The Penguins countered with two goals in 2:20, though, to tie the game and then take the lead. Chris Kunitz struck first, then Tyler Kennedy had his fourth goal of the season to make the score 2-1 after a 3-on-1 with Sidney Crosby and Kris Letang. Crosby picked up Letang’s rebound and sent a cross crease pass to Kennedy, who shot the puck into an empty net. A desperate Canes team would not slow down, however, retaliating with a goal by Patrick Dwyer 4:31 later.

The back and forth action continued in the second period with Carolina and Pittsburgh exchanging goals. Sidney Crosby had his third point of the night and 14th goal of the season to put his team up by one. The Canes fought back again, however, with Jussi Jokinen’s first goal of the night

The Penguins scored a controversial power play goal 9:19 into the third period. Sidney Crosby fed a snap pass to Chris Kunitz, who was parked in front of the net. Kunitz immediately fired a shot at Peters from the top of the crease. Peters was in perfect position to stop the puck, but the biscuit slipped under his pads after the initial save. The whistle had already blown when the puck crossed the line, but in a surprising review decision, the ‘war room’ in Toronto deemed Kunitz’ second of the game a good goal. The determined Hurricanes would not give up. With Peters pulled and 52 seconds left to play in regulation, Jokinen scored his second goal of the game to tie it at four and force overtime. After taking a quick pass from Eric Staal, Jokinen swept a shot just over Fleury’s glove.

Crosby and Evgeni Malkin both had chances to end the game late in overtime, but the Canes held on for the shootout. Kris Letang faked out Peters, lifting a high backhand shot behind him. Fleury easily stopped Carolina’s first shooter, Jeff Skinner. Up second for the Pens, Sidney Crosby slapped a wicked shot through Peters’ five-hole and Marc-Andre Fleury put his pads down to deny the Canes’ second shooter, Jokinen, and win the game.

SCORE SHEET

Goals:
Chris Kunitz (7) scored two goals for the Penguins and Tyler Kennedy (4) and Sidney Crosby  (14) picked up the other two. Jussi Jokinen (4) had two goals, while Brandon Sutter (4) and Patrick Dwyer (5) each had one for the Hurricanes.

Assists: Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin led their team with three assists each, while Kris Letang and Zbynek Michalek each had one. Jussi Jokinen assisted twice and Joni Pitkanen, Ian White, Jamie McBain, Patrick Dwyer, Eric Staal and Tuomo Ruutu each had a helper.

IN THE NET

Marc-Andre Fleury, 4-0-1 in his last five starts, stopped 30 of 34 shots. Justin Peters turned aside 32 of 36 shots.

SPECIAL TEAMS

The Penguins went 1-2 on the man advantage. The Canes were shut out on two power play chances.

NOTES

Evgeni Malkin’s second assist on Crosby’s goal was his 400th point in 329 career games…Sidney Crosby is on an eight-game point streak. He has seven goals and 18 points in his last eight games and is now only one point behind Steven Stamkos…Sidney Crosby (1), Jussi Jokinen (2) and Chris Kunitz (3) were named the three stars of the game.

UP NEXT

The Penguins travel to the Sunshine State Monday to take on the Florida Panthers.

Penguins (11-8-2)

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