March 19, 2009

NHL: Ottawa 5, Montreal 4

Jason Spezza scored two of Ottawa's three unanswered goals in the first period Thursday night and the Senators held on to edge Montreal 5-4.

Brian Elliott made 28 saves to pick up his seventh straight victory. It is the longest winning streak for a rookie goaltender in franchise history.

Guillaume Latendresse gave Montreal the early lead, but Nick Foligno tied it on the power-play and Spezza then scored twice in a span of 58 seconds. His first goal came on a backhander and he followed that by tipping in a shot with 2:24 to play in the opening period.

Ottawa won its third straight and has captured seven out of eight.

Latendresse had two goals for Montreal, which has lost two in a row and six out of eight. Carey Price allowed four goals on 15 shots and was replaced by Jaroslav Halak, who made 23 saves the rest of the way.

Chris Phillips gave Ottawa a 5-3 lead with 5:26 to play and his goal became the game-winner when Roman Hamrlik got a slap shot past Elliott with 42 seconds remaining.