What looked like it was going to be a trap game early on turned into a solid victory for the Calgary Flames Thursday night. The Flames won their second of the season versus the Ottawa Senators by way of a 5-1 victory at the Saddledome. The final score is very indicative of how the game went, but it wasn’t so easy early on.
Ottawa would push the pace early and find the back of the net a little over four minutes into the contest. Anthony DuClair would chip the puck into the Flames end with some nifty stick work and fire off a shot that Mike Smith would stop. The only issue was the rebound would drop right into Dylan DeMelo’s lap and he would bury the loose puck to put Ottawa up 1-0 early. And that would pretty much be it for Ottawa’s offence.
As for the Flames offence, it responded quickly and came to life. Mark Giordano would put the Flames on the board with his patented hard work. Giordano would collect a loose puck and come streaking in on his own and beat Craig Anderson on his third shot of the sequence and just like that we were all tied at 1-1.
From that point on the Flames fourth line took over the game. Garnet Hathaway would deposit his 9th goal of the season on a beautiful feed from Andrew Mangiapane and Hathaway would return the favour at the 9:00 mark of the second period by getting the secondary assist on Andrew Mangianpane’s 6th goal of the season, which gave the Flames a 3-1 lead.
Mikael Backlund and Matthew Tkachuk would round out the scoring, each getting third period markers to put the Senators away by the score of 5-1.
1st: 8:54- (SHG) Giordano (15) (Unassisted), 11:15- Hathaway (9) (Mangiapane/Ryan)
2nd: 9:00- Mangiapane (6) (Ryan/Hathaway)
3rd: 11:23- Backlund (20) (Frolik/Tkachuk), 18:33- Tkachuk (34) (Frolik/Andersson)
1st: 4:30- DeMelo (4) (Duclair/Gibbons)
The Flames 4th line was once again the strong point of the Flames overall game tonight and that’s been the trend since a little after the All Star Break. The bottom six had been doing a lot of the heavy lifting during the prolonged slump by the top six and tonight they stepped back into the limelight. Andrew Mangiapane, Garnet Hathaway and Derek Ryan combined for six points on the evening to lead the Flames.
While Ottawa played very “meh” on the night, the same could not be said for the Senators goaltender Craig Anderson. Anderson stopped 31 of the 36 shots that came his way and many weren’t of the easy variety. Without Anderson’s stellar play this game would have gotten way out of hand.
Sean Monahan and Sam Bennett each returned to the Flames lineup with only Monahan going the distance. Monahan played just over 20 minutes, had four SOG and won 83% of his face offs. Bennett only mustered 7:12 of ice time before leaving the game and not returning.
Flame Of The Game
Garnet Hathaway (F): Hathaway had a multi point night, 3 SOG, 4 hits and his goal would turn out to be the game winner.
3/23: Calgary Flames @ Vancouver Canucks, 8 PM MT