Lightning 3, Panthers 2

Associated Press  |  Last updated March 12, 2013
Steven Stamkos snapped a third-period tie with his NHL-leading 20th goal, and the Tampa Bay Lightning held on to beat the Florida Panthers 3-2 on Tuesday night despite recording a season-low 13 shots. Vincent Lecavalier and Martin St. Louis also scored for the Lightning, and Anders Lindback made 37 saves. St. Louis added had two assists for the Lightning, whose previous low for shots this season was 19. Kris Versteeg and Tomas Kopecky had goals for the Panthers. Jacob Markstrom stopped 10 shots in the loss. Stamkos scored the winning power-play goal from the right of the net 5:30 into the third to give the Lightning a 3-2 lead. Tampa Bay won for just the second time in nine games, but beat the Panthers for the seventh straight time - three this season. The reeling Panthers have lost seven of eight and 14 of 17. Florida cut its deficit to 2-1 just 13 seconds into the second period. A loose puck behind the net found its way out to Versteeg at the right of the net, and he poked it past Lindback on the glove side. The Panthers tied it on Kopecky's goal at 11:24 of the second. Jack Skille sent a pass from behind the net to Kopecky for a wrist shot that went under Lindback's pads. Tampa Bay recorded only three shots in the first period, but made the most of them by scoring twice. Lecavalier, St. Louis, and Killorn combined on both goals. The Lightning took a 1-0 lead on Lecavalier's goal. St. Louis sent a pass to Lecavalier in front for a wrist shot that beat Markstrom at 1:36. It was the fourth straight game Markstrom allowed a goal within the first 2:35. The Lightning pushed the lead to 2-0 when Killorn sent a pass from the left circle across to St. Louis at the right side of the net. His wrist shot got past Markstrom at 17:48. Versteeg left the game midway in the third period after colliding with Lightning defenseman Radko Gudas along the boards. Versteeg appeared to injure his right leg. NOTES: St. Louis has a seven-game point streak. ... Gudas made his NHL debut. ... Stamkos has a goal in eight straight games against the Panthers. . Versteeg's goal was his first since Jan. 31 against Winnipeg. He missed 17 games this season due to injury. . Markstrom and Lindback are both from Gavle, Sweden.
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