Pens Fall To Flyers
By DAN SCIFO
PITTSBURGH – Brayden Schenn scored two goals and backup goalie Ray Emery stopped 30 shots to lead the Philadelphia Flyers in a 2-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday night for their third straight victory.
Schenn, who had a goal and an assist during Philadelphia’s 5-0 win against Ottawa the previous night, opened the scoring late in the first period and got the tiebreaker late in the second. Emery got the start one night after Steve Mason shut out the Senators.
Penguins captain Sidney Crosby scored his ninth goal of the season, and first in eight games. Marc-Andre Fleury made 19 saves for Pittsburgh, which has lost three straight for the second time this season.
Pittsburgh came into the game with four straight wins against its intrastate rival and victories in six of the last eight meetings. However, the Flyers, 9-2-1 at Consol Energy Center since the arena opened, led by a goal after two periods. Philadelphia then shut down the high-flying Penguins in the third as Pittsburgh generated few opportunities in the final 20 minutes, appeared sluggish during a power-play opportunity, and used its timeout to regroup early in the period.
After a horrid 1-7 start, the Flyers have gone 6-3-1 in their last 10 games, earning points in five of their last six contests. Philadelphia scored first in all seven wins and lost in all seven games in which it has allowed the first goal.
Philadelphia is currently on a three-game road swing, coming off a dominating 5-0 victory at Ottawa 24 hours earlier.
The Flyers have scored 11 goals in three games after getting 22 in their first 15, the fewest for any team during that stretch since 1956.
The Penguins were off since a 2-1 loss Saturday at St. Louis and hadn’t played at home in 11 days. Pittsburgh, despite a wealth of talent, has experienced trouble scoring recently, totaling just three goals in the three-game skid. The Penguins are 11-2 when they score three or more goals and 0-4 when they score fewer than three.
Crosby has just three goals in 11 games, while Evgeni Malkin hasn’t scored in his last 11 and Pascal Dupuis, a 20-goal scorer last season, has gone 12 games without a goal.
Chris Kunitz thought he staked the Penguins to a 1-0 lead 19 seconds into the game, but the goal was disallowed after it was determined there was a distinct kicking motion when the rebound from his initial backhand shot ricocheted off his shin guards.
Instead, the Flyers got the game’s first tally with 3:58 left in the first period, when Schenn, who has four goals in six games, took a left-corner feed from Wayne Simmonds and wristed a shot over Fleury’s glove hand from the faceoff dot.
The Penguins got it back on the power play midway through the second period, tying the game at 8:29 when Crosby one-touched Malkin’s centering pass from the right-wing boards over Emery’s blocker.
Philadelphia reclaimed the lead with a power-play goal of its own with 1:20 to go in the period. Jakub Voracek’s initial shot from the point deflected off several players in front and bounced off the post. Schenn found the rebound in front of the net, and tapped his second of the game into a partially open net, giving the Flyers a one-goal edge.
NOTES: Penguins D Paul Martin missed his second straight game with a lower-body injury. Dustin Jeffrey and Jayson Megna were also out for the Penguins. … D Hal Gill, D Andrej Meszaros, and LW Michael Raffl sat for Philadelphia. … The two rivals do not play again until a home-and-home set March 15-16.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.