The Washington Capitals beat the Ottawa Senators 2-1 Wednesday night at Verizon Center. The Capitals improved to 22-6-2, 46 pts, and remain atop the Metropolitan Division standings.
The starting lines for the Capitals:
The Capitals healthy scratches for tonight’s game included Aaron Ness, Chris Brown and Stanislav Galiev.
The Caps did a much better job of keeping the opposing team’s shot-count down for the game. Braden Holtby continued his top-level form in this one, making numerous nice stops. Michael Latta had a good game with 1 goal and 1 assist. The Capitals played a good all-around game, with the defense holding the Senators to 27 shots on goal. The Capitals have posted a 22-6-2 (46 points) record this season, marking the team’s best start (in terms of points and wins) in franchise history. Game summary can be found here: Individual player stats can be found here:
The Caps would get the game’s first power play on a hooking call on the Senators’ Chris Neil at the 2:34 mark of the opening frame. The Caps had significant offensive zone time with several blasts, mostly from the perimeter, but would be unable to find pay dirt. Michael Latta would finally break through on a break-away wrister at the 14:06 mark to give the Caps a 1-0 lead.
The first period would end with the Capitals leading 1-0. The Capitals led in shots on goal 14-8 for the period.
Braden Holtby continued his strong play of late, making several nice stops to keep the Caps lead. The Capitals would go on their first penalty kill at 13:54 when Matt Niskanen was called for hooking. However, Ottawa’s man-advantage would be quickly squandered on a penalty call on Kyle Turris for interference. The second period would end with the Caps holding onto a 2-0 lead. The Capitals also held a thin lead in SOG 18-17.
The first half of the third period saw very little in the way of sustained offensive zone pressure by either squad. Tom Wilson would be called for a five-minute major and ejected from the game on a very questionable shoulder-to-shoulder hit.
The Sens would take advantage quickly, narrowing the Caps lead to 2-1 on a goal by Bobby Ryan. The Capitals defense would stiffen and shut down the Sens on the extended power play, and would hold on for the 2-1 win.