- Associated Press - Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The Washington Capitals found a way to tie a back-and-forth game with 3:27 left against Ottawa on Wednesday night.

It lasted just 64 seconds before Zack Smith and the Senators retook the lead.

Bobby Ryan scored two goals and the Senators topped the Capitals 6-4.

“The big test for us was when they tied the game. We didn’t handle momentum swings very well in the first period or in some previous games,” said Ottawa coach Paul MacLean, whose team has dropped four of five coming in.


Smith scored the go-ahead goal with 2:23 remaining when he took a pass from Chris Neil at center ice, skated in against defenseman Nate Schmidt and beat goaltender Braden Holtby from the left circle.

Smith’s goal came after Washington’s John Carlson tied the game with Smith in the penalty box.

Chris Phillips had a goal and an assist, and Mika Zibanejad and Colin Greening added goals for Ottawa. Erik Karlsson had two assists for the Senators, who trailed 3-1 after one period.

“Obviously a huge two points for us tonight,” Phillips said. “We need to build off this momentum and keep it going. We look at the standings and we’re not in a great spot right now. We need to get on a bit of a roll.”

It was Ottawa’s first win in regulation at the Verizon Center since March 12, 2006.

Eric Fehr, Marcus Johansson and Brooks Laich also scored for Washington, which led 3-1 before dropping its fourth straight.

“We played a solid game (losing Saturday) in Toronto; we played lousy tonight,” Capitals coach Adam Oates said. “Not good decisions. We get a lead and we still don’t do the right things.”

Zibanejad had given Ottawa a 4-3 lead at 6:05 of the third when he deflected a Jason Spezza shot past Holtby for Ottawa’s third power-play goal of the game.

Craig Anderson stopped 29 shots for Ottawa. Holtby made 35 saves for Washington.

Trailing 3-1 after one period, Ottawa tied it in the second as it outshot the Capitals 19-3.

“A lot of angry guys in here,” Anderson said of the Ottawa locker room after the first 20 minutes.

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