- Associated Press - Sunday, December 19, 2010

OTTAWA | The Washington Capitals had good reason to celebrate like they’d just won a lot more than a regular-season game.

Mathieu Perreault scored twice, Eric Fehr had a goal and an assist and Washington ended its losing streak at eight games, beating the Ottawa Senators 3-2 on Sunday night.

The Capitals scored three times in a 6:21 span early in the second to erase a 2-0 deficit. Washington, which also had two goals disallowed, had been held to 11 goals during its 0-6-2 skid.

“We felt like we won a championship,” Perreault said. “We needed that win so much for our confidence and just for the team. That was a huge win for us.”

The Capitals‘ players poured off the bench at the end of the game and gathered in a mob around goalie Michal Neuvirth, knocking the net up against the boards.

“In the sense that we’ll be able to sleep tonight I think it was a big win,” coach Bruce Boudreau said. “And as a coach, just looking at the players’ faces and seeing them happy instead of grinding and everything it’s a huge win, but in the end it’s one win out of nine. It’s a relief for us but it’s not like we’re out of the woods.”

Ryan Shannon and Chris Kelly scored in the first for Ottawa, which hadn’t lost through regulation in its previous four games (2-0-2).

“We got the start we wanted, they got some good breaks early in the second and that’s five minutes we would like to have back, but that’s the way it goes,” Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson said.

Alfredsson acknowledged that Washington’s victory celebration was a bit unusual for a midseason game, referencing the HBO camera crews on hand to film the Capitals for the cable network’s reality series.

“I’m sure they know they’re on TV and they’ve got a show going on so that’s I’m sure a good reason,” Alfredsson said.

Perreault, who was sick and didn’t play Saturday night in a loss in Boston, gave Washington its first lead on a power play 6:55 into the second for his second goal of the middle period.

He scored his first goal of the game 34 seconds into the second to draw the Capitals to 2-1. Fehr, who assisted on Perreault’s second goal, tied it at 2 with his fifth goal at 1:20 after having another waved off when time expired at the end of the first.

“We knew we had to win that game,” Perreault said. “After the first period we all regrouped and said, ‘OK guys, this has got to be our best period of the year.’ And I think that’s what we did.”

Neuvirth stopped 24 shots for Washington, which also had an apparent goal by Alex Ovechkin disallowed later in the second. Brian Elliott made 31 saves for Ottawa.

“When you get two points you’re just happy like a kid,” said Ovechkin, who got his team-leading 26th assist and 38th point on Fehr’s goal. “We just want to win so bad.”

Story Continues →