OTTAWA (AP)—Marian Hossa was more relieved than excited after snapping a lengthy scoring drought.
Hossa, who set a team record with 45 goals last season, scored his 11th to put the Senators up 3-1 at 11:06 of the third period. He raised both arms in relief after driving a slap shot past Nikolai Khabibulin for his first goal since Nov. 20.
“I’m definitely not used to it, going 10 games without a goal,” Hossa said about his post-goal celebration. “It’s definitely nice.”
“You have to give a little credit to Ottawa, the way they move the puck,” Lightning coach John Tortorella said. “That’s a good hockey team we played tonight.”
Tampa Bay, which has lost two in a row, is just 2-6-2 in its last 10.
“It seems the last while we just haven’t been starting well,” Lightning center Brad Richards said.
Andreychuk opened the scoring 9:34 in with his 618th career goal off a turnover in the Senators’ zone. Cory Stillman took the puck from Ottawa’s Jason Spezza along the right boards and fired a shot from the high slot. Shane Willis got the rebound and passed to Andreychuk, who scored into an open net for his fifth of the season.
The Senators took advantage of a turnover by Lightning defenseman Nolan Pratt to tie it 1:06 later. Bonk intercepted Pratt’s cross-ice pass and completed a give-and-go with Martin Havlat by banging in the return pass from the right side of the net.
“Ottawa is probably one of the better teams with sticks, taking away passes and passing lanes,” Tortorella said. “(Pratt) knows he shouldn’t be making that play. He did, and it ends up in our net. There’s nothing you can do about it now.”
Spezza atoned for his mistake in the second period when he left a drop pass for Smolinski, who used Lightning defenseman Cory Sarich to screen his shot past Khabibulin.
“It was a great shot,” Spezza said. “(Smolinski) has been sniffing around the net a lot lately. We had a lot of chances as a line and it was great to see him and Hoss both score tonight. Hopefully, we can keep on rolling.”
Lalime helped preserve the 2-1 lead with several big stops, including a pad save on Richards with less than one minute left in the second. He also made saves on successive shots by Tim Taylor midway through the third.
“He made some great saves,” Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson said. “They had that 2-on-1 late in the second and he made a great toe save.”
Hossa’s goal put Ottawa up by two, but Fedotenko made it a one-goal gamewith his fourth of the season 1:45 later at 12:51.
Richards has one goal in his last 20 games. … Khabibulin stopped 37 of 40 shots. … The Senators are 11-2-1 against Tampa Bay since the start ofthe 2000-01 season.