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Senators 5, Blackhawks 3

The SportsXchange

OTTAWA -- For any hope of making the playoffs, the Ottawa Senators knew they had to run the table with 10 straight victories.

They put No. 1 in the books Friday night, defeating the defending Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks 5-3 in front of 18,922 fans at Canadian Tire Centre.

Goaltender Craig Anderson made an impressive return from an upper-body injury with 46 saves for the victory. Chicago backup goalie Antti Raanta was given the start and made 24 stops.

Senators' goals were scored by wingers Erik Condra, Milan Michalek and Clarke MacArthur, center Kyle Turris and defenseman Cody Ceci.

Wingers Patrick Sharp and Marian Hossa and defenseman Brent Seabrook replied for Chicago.

It was the second setback in a row for the Blackhawks, who are now on just their eighth losing streak of the season.

The Senators built a 3-0 lead then had to hang on with a strong third to save the victory.

Ottawa opened the scoring at 9:25 of the first period with a short-handed effort. Capitalizing on a giveaway by Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith, Senators center Zack Smith passed to Condra, who held on to the puck as he cut through the middle of the ice, then fired a shot past Raanta on the glove side.

The Senators then scored two goals 53 seconds apart, separated by an intermission.

Ceci's drive from the point deflected off the stick of Hawks winger Matt Carey and past Raanta with 30 seconds left in the first, then center Jason Spezza and winger Ales Hemsky set up Michalek for a tip in off a nice passing play at the 23 second mark of the second.

The Blackhawks battled back with a couple of goals in the second half of the middle frame. Sharp converted a setup from center Jonathan Toews on the power play at the 10:46 mark and then, with just 41 seconds left in the period, Hossa intercepted a pass from Senators defenseman Marc Methot and muscled his way to the net before tucking a backhand between Anderson's left skate and the post.

Turris scored off a scramble on the power play at the six minute mark of the third, and MacArthur converted on his second breakaway of the same period at the 10:54 mark to restore the three goal lead.

Seabrook scored with three minutes left when his slap shot fluttered toward the Ottawa goal and rolled in off the back of Anderson.

The Blackhawks finish up a their three game road trip when they visit the Pittsburgh Penguins Sunday. The Senators, who just began a five-game homestand, host the Calgary Flames on Sunday.

NOTES: Senators G Craig Anderson, who was born a 12-hour drive from Chicago in Park Ridge, Ill., was making his first start since March 10. He was the backup the last two games after missing five with an upper-body injury. ... Playing for just the third time since Jan. 23, Blackhawks G Antti Raanta was felled by a Jason Spezza shot that hit him in the side of the leg 12:50 in the first period. After spending a few moments flat on the ice, Raanta convinced the trainer he was good enough to stay in the game. ... Senators W Erik Condra ended a 25-game slump when he scored in the first period. It was the Senators' fifth shorthanded goal of the season. ... Making his NHL debut, it appeared Blackhawks W Matt Carey was the victim of a team prank when he bolted from the dressing room to the ice for pre-game warmup, clearly thinking his teammates were right behind him. Carey skated a half of a lap or so before realizing they were still in the hallway watching him.
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