Roberto Luongo, in a surprise start, made 40 saves and Maxim Lapierre scored the go-ahead goal as the Vancouver Canucks beat the Calgary Flames 4-1 on Wednesday night.
Andrew Ebbett centered a pass that Lapierre swatted behind Miikka Kiprusoff from the top of the crease, breaking a 1-1 tie with 9:23 left in regulation.
Up until that goal, most of the play in the third period was in the Vancouver end where Luongo was sharp, turning aside dangerous chance after chance.
Calgary outshot the Canucks 41-29, including 18-9 in the final 20 minutes.
Alex Burrows, Mason Raymond and Daniel Sedin also scored for Vancouver, winner of nine of its last 12. The Canucks, who began a five-game road trip, opened a six-point lead atop the Northwest Division over the Minnesota Wild. They will also make stops in Colorado, Nashville, St. Louis and Dallas.
Curtis Glencross with his team-leading 15th had the lone goal for Calgary, which has lost six of its last seven. The Flames remain tied with the Florida Panthers for second to last overall.
Cory Schneider was supposed to start for Vancouver but fell ill, so the Canucks turned to Luongo for the first time in 12 games. Schneider was so sick that the Canucks arranged to dress University of Calgary goaltender Dustin Butler as their backup goaltender.
Vancouver's all-time leader in victories, Luongo won his first game since he defeated Nashville on March 14.
Luongo was the center of attention much of the night for the sellout Scotiabank Saddledome crowd of 19,289, which included numerous fans wearing Canucks jerseys. Every time Luongo made a save, boos mixed with ''Loooos'' rained down from the crowd.
The crowd really got charged up in a sequence midway through the third period. Mikael Backlund's shot was stopped, and as the rebound kicked into the air and was batted at the net by Glencross, Luongo jabbed out his glove with some flourish and snatched it out of the air.
At the other end, Kiprusoff made 25 saves. The 36-year-old Finn entered the night ranked last in the NHL with an .873 save percentage and second to last with a 3.58 goals-against average.
Calgary scored first on a nice setup from behind the net by Max Reinhart, playing his third NHL game. Reinhart backhanded a pass in front to Glencross, who didn't get his initial shot through but regained the puck and put a shot into the top corner.
It was Reinhart's first NHL point.
Vancouver tied the game just 64 seconds later on a goal that originally was emphatically waved off by referee Mike Leggo.
After video review, it was determined that in the mad scramble around the Flames' goal crease after the puck trickled behind Kiprusoff and toward the goal-line Burrows got his stick on it. It was not kicked in as Leggo originally indicated.
NOTES: Calgary was playing its first game back at home since a lethargic 8-2 rout at the hands of the Oilers last Wednesday. The Flames went onto the road after that and, boosted by a string of AHL call-ups, in some cases due to injury, they turned in three much better efforts. ... LW Steve Begin (upper body) was shaken up early in the first period and did not return for Calgary. ... It was Reinhart's first assist as a Flame. His dad Paul's last point as a Flame, also an assist, was nearly 25 years ago. ... Calgary C Blair Jones dressed in place of Matt Stajan (upper body injury). Jones was recalled on an emergency basis from Abbotsford (AHL) on Tuesday. ... Butler, who wore jersey No. 30, practiced with many of the Flames during their informal ice times during the lockout.