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Game 39 Recap: Penguins 5, Hurricanes 3

Canes break franchise record with eighth straight home loss in tough battle with Pens.

Beau Bennett ties the game against the Hurricanes in the third period at the PNC Arena
Beau Bennett ties the game against the Hurricanes in the third period at the PNC Arena

The Carolina Hurricanes got some much wanted and needed scoring from other sources than their first line and took a lead in the third period, but it was not enough to hold off the surging Pittsburgh Penguins who went on to a 5-3 win in front of 17,168 at the PNC arena on Tuesday night.

The loss was the team's eighth straight at home, a franchise record. They are now 1-12-1 in their last 14 games.

The home team jumped out to a 1-0 lead on a powerplay goal by Joe Corvo at 4:06 into the game. Jordan Staal won a faceoff and got the puck to Corvo, who skated to an opening at the point. The goal came during a 4-on-3 opportunity.

The lead was short-lived though as the Pens would tie it up a minute and change later on a goal by Robert Bortuzzo.

Newly acquired Brenden Morrow put the Penguins ahead a bit later in the period when Jussi Jokinen made a nice play getting the puck to him. The former Star put a pretty move on Justin Faulk to get open and beat Justin Peters top shelf.

Speaking of Peters, he was a surprise starter and was called upon to play when Dan Ellis injured himself in warmup. All in all, the goalie played better than he did the previous night and made 28 saves on 32 shots.

Later in the opening period, the Canes tied things up 2-2, when Bobby Sanguinetti found a lane from the point. Once again the goal was off of a faceoff win, this time by Eric Staal, who got the lone assist.

After an evenly played second period with no score for either team, Riley Nash would put Carolina up 3-2 early in the third when he knocked in the rebound from a Tuomo Ruutu shot. Chad LaRose worked hard on the play as well and kept the puck alive.

The Canes had some jump and held onto the lead until the midway point when Beau Bennett sent a puck to the net which seemed to bounce in off of Jamie McBain.

Almost immediately the Canes turned the puck over at center ice and Jarome Iginla skated it in and put a shot on Peters. The puck bounced out to Evgeni Malkin, who made no mistake. The goal was scored 19 seconds after the previous and turned out to be the game winner as Pascal Dupuis finished the scoring with an empty-netter with less than two seconds left.

Coach Kirk Muller could not fault his team much after the game.

They're a good team, they're a veteran team and they made us pay on three simple turnovers. That is unfortunate because aside from that I thought we put up a pretty gutsy effort tonight.

When asked about Peters being pushed into action, he applauded his goalie.

Peters did a great job for not thinking he was going to play and told five minutes before the drop of the puck that he was the starting goalie. He was ready, so good job on his part.

Other words from Faulk and Nash are at the end of the article. The Canes will travel to Washington tomorrow for a game against the Caps on Thursday night.

Game Notes:

  • The Pens outshot the Canes 33-28 and out-hit them 37-28.
  • The Hurricanes won 59% of the game's faceoffs with Eric Staal leading the way at 80%.
  • During the third period, Tim Brent left the bench area as did Drayson Bowman with various injuries. Both will be looked at before the next game to see if they can play. The coach said that Alexander Semin was still not 100% but he gutted it out, as did Faulk, who was not fully satisfied with his first game back.