A healthy scratch the previous two games, Surovy had the first two-goal game of his young NHL career Saturday night to lead the Penguins past the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-3.
“He told me I had to play with the same intensity I did when I first got called up from the minors,” said the 22-year-old Surovy, who tied it midway through the second period and added a power-play goal in the third.
“This was a big win for us, and I hope I get some more chances.”
Surovy’s linemate Aleksey Morozov added a career-high three assists as Pittsburgh scored a season-high five goals and won consecutive home games for the first time. The victory came in the Penguins’ first game after completing a winless five-game road trip Friday.
The Blue Jackets, who allowed three one-goal leads to slip away, are the only NHL team without a road win this season. The Blue Jackets are winless in 14 road games dating to last season (0-12-1-1).
“It’s tough, because every time we go on the road we think we’re going to get the monkey off our backs and we have disappointing efforts,” Columbus forward Rick Nash said. “When you don’t come ready to play, it’s disappointing.
“We have no one to blame but ourselves.”
Brian Holzinger’s fourth goal at 15:28 of the second period completed a give-and-go with Morozov and put Pittsburgh ahead 4-3. Surovy’s third goal of the season at 13:02 of the third period, his first on the power play, came off a deflection of Ryan Malone’s shot from the right point.
“He knows how to find the puck around the net,” Morozov said of Surovy, “and he can score a lot of goals for us.”
The Pittsburgh power play, last in the NHL for much of the early season, is 8-for-25 the last five games.
“The power play is something that has really brought confidence to our club right now,” Olczyk said. “We’ve talked about it a lot, and the guys have responded.”
But Blue Jackets’ coach Doug MacLean pointed to Matt Murley’s first NHL goal, which forged a 2-2 tie for Pittsburgh with 44 seconds to play in the first period, as a turning point. Murley’s centering pass bounced off defenseman Derrick Walser’s skate and past Fred Brathwaite.
“A bad goal at the end of the first period, where we have total control and we give it away, and a bad penalty with eight minutes left of a one-goal game,” he said. “We gave up nine scoring chances in the game and we lose, and it doesn’t make sense.”
Walser scored his first goal of the season at 5:21 of the first period on the power play when he converted the rebound of Andrew Cassels’ shot, and Pittsburgh’s Dick Tarnstrom tied it with a backhander from the slot at 9:16 on the power play.
Nikolai Zherdev’s second goal in five games restored the Blue Jackets’ leadat 14:34 before Murley tied it.
Pittsburgh D Dan Focht returned to the lineup after missing 13 games with a broken finger. … Columbus began a stretch of 11 of 16 games on the road. … Blue Jackets C Dan Fritsche joined the U.S. team preparing for the World Junior Championships. … Pittsburgh’s Drake Berehowsky hit the goal post from the neutral zone in the first period when his dump-in took a strange bounce off the side boards and then hopped over Brathwaite’s blocker. … ThePenguins scratched Patrick Boileau, Kris Beech and Marc Bergevin.