Cowen the hero in Senators’ overtime win

Jared Cowen saved the day for the Ottawa Senators after they almost threw another game away.

Cowen the hero in Senators’ overtime win

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Jared Cowen saved the day for the Ottawa Senators after they almost threw another game away.
He scored 45 seconds into overtime, off a pass from Erik Karlsson, to help the Senators break a three-game losing streak and get out of Buffalo with a 3-2 win.
This came after the Senators blew a 1-0 first-period lead and had to fight back from a 2-1 deficit.
However, the victory was muted with the loss of Milan Michalek, who opened the scoring with his league-leading 19th of the year and then was injured in a huge collision with Karlsson about 4:30 into the second period. The two collided just inside the Buffalo blue line.
Michalek suffered an upper body injury and didn’t return to the game. It wasn’t immediately known how serious the injury was or whether he’d be able to play Wednesday against the Boston Bruins. Coach Paul MacLean said he’d be re-evaluated in Ottawa.
Karlsson said the collision was simply bad luck.
“They had the puck and I read the guy’s pass and stepped up,” he said.
“(Michalek) was coming full speed to back check. I was only looking for their guys, not ours, and we collided pretty hard there.
“We were both going forward. I haven’t talked with him so I don’t know what happened to him. I’m fine, though. It’s just bad luck.”
On the winning goal, Cowen knew he was taking a big chance going deep to the front of the Buffalo net. Both he and Karlsson were deep below the blue line.
“When I was going down, I was thinking it was a gamble,” said Cowen.
“I wasn’t sure if I should be there but obviously it worked out. It’s good to get a win.”
Peter Regin, with his second of the season, also scored for the Senators.
Paul Szczechura and Tyler Ennis scored for the Sabres, who had a players-only meeting after the game.
Craig Anderson faced 29 shots while Ryan Miller faced 44.
The first period began promisingly for the Senators, with a deft back pass from Jason Spezza to Michalek, open in the slot, for a 1-0 lead just 69 seconds into the game. Couldn’t have scripted it much better.
And for the next 15 minutes, the Sabres didn’t get much, a few shots but nothing worrisome.
The Senators just couldn’t stand prosperity, though.
In a little more than a minute from 14:16 to 15:44, the Senators themselves changed the complexion of the game through a handful of horrifying turnovers that gave the Sabres a 2-1 lead.
Szczechura got the first after almost every Senator on the ice misplayed the puck, while Ennis got the second after David Rundblad started a three-way Buffalo passing play by putting a clearing pass right in Derek Roy’s stick. Anderson never had a chance.

********************************

GAME FILE

WHY THEY WON: The Sabres have been particularly luckless at home this season, but the Senators stuck with it, even after falling behind, and got a little bit of luck in OT when two of their defencemen took a gamble that paid off.

DUD: Ottawa power play. David Rundblad was an early challenger for putting a lovely clearing pass on Derek Roy’s stick, but any power play that can go 0-for-4, and 2-for-26 over the last seven games, is the hands-down dud.

STUD: Craig Anderson. He had no chance on Buffalo’s two goals, created by turnovers, but he was solid after that and gave his team a chance to rebound and win.

CZECH MATE: Milan Michalek’s 19th goal moved him to the top of the NHL goal-scoring list (at least temporarily). It was his fifth goal in his last seven games and puts him on a pace to score 50.25 goals this season. The bad news is that he’s now out with an upper-body injury.

Tags:

What do you think? Leave a comment