Habs top Senators to extend home surge

Associated Press  |  Last updated February 03, 2013
David Desharnais and Erik Cole scored first-period goals and the Montreal Canadiens held on for a 2-1 victory over the Ottawa Senators on Sunday. The win completed a sweep of weekend matinees at home for Montreal (6-2-0) after a 6-1 win Saturday over the Buffalo Sabres. The Canadiens have won five straight at home after dropping their home opener to Toronto on Jan. 19. Jakob Silfverberg scored for Ottawa (5-3-1), which was coming off a 1-0 loss at Carolina on Friday night. Senators goalie Craig Anderson has not conceded a goal after the first period in eight games this season. Max Pacioretty was back on the ice only eight days after having his appendix removed and got an assist on his first shift. His return gave Montreal an almost completely healthy lineup and dropped Lars Eller from the first to the fourth line a day after he had three points against the Sabres. The game was only 36 seconds old when Tomas Plekanec was sent off for goalie interference and Ottawa used the man advantage to take the lead at 1:38. Patrick Wiercioch found Silfverberg at the far blue-line with a stretch pass during a Montreal line change and the rookie went in alone to beat Carey Price on the glove side. Pacioretty slid a puck to the net that Desharnais tipped past Anderson to tie it at 2:12. A Montreal power play had just ended when Cole lifted a feed from Francis Bouillon over Anderson at 11:29. Anderson and Price traded big saves through a scoreless second frame. The Senators' Andre Benoit thought he had a goal 1:26 into the third, but it was waived off as Silfverberg was called for goalie interference. The Canadiens opened last season 1-5-2 en route to finishing last in the Eastern Conference. P.K. Subban picked up a point in a second straight game since he returned after a contract dispute. He also had to leave the ice for a second day in a row to have a skate repaired, missing the opening 10 minutes of the third period. Notes: With Pacioretty's return, reserve C Petteri Nokelainen (back) is Montreal's only injured player. ... Ryan White was scratched for a second game, joining Tomas Kaberle and Yannick Weber. ... Sergei Gonchar and Guillaume Latendresse sat for the Senators, who are also without Jason Spezza (back) and Jared Cowen (hip).
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