OTTAWA (AP) - The Tampa Bay Lightning took advantage of Ottawa’s struggles to keep their winning streak going and extend the Senators’ skid.
Tampa, second in the Atlantic Division with 83 points and 11 games remaining, is peaking at the right time.
“We just seem to be scoring tons of goals,” Bishop said after getting his 34th win of the season. “We’re rolling right now and we have a big game against Pittsburgh so hopefully we can keep it going.”
“What is there to say now, I don’t know, it’s pretty empty,” Lehner said. “It’s tough to be in there right now. I can say again, yeah I sucked … I’m trying to be there and trying to step up to make saves, but the players are so good in this league and they get too much time. It’s tough.”
The Senators have talked about the need to play better and play smarter, but coach Paul MacLean said it’s the same mistakes that keep coming back to plague his team time and time again.
“Groundhog day,” MacLean said. “Thirteen giveaways, six minor penalties, we played too much in our zone and ends up in the same thing.”
Ottawa then had a great chance to tie it as Callahan took a penalty with 55 seconds remaining. However, with Lehner on the bench for an extra skater - giving the Senators a two-man advantage - they were unable to beat Bishop.
“We competed to the end, but once again we didn’t find a way to win,” Senators captain Jason Spezza said. “We fought right to the end, but once again we found a way to lose.”
Brewer scored his first goal in 95 games to give the Lightning a 4-3 lead at 3:48 of the third with a great shot off his backhand to sneak the puck in under the crossbar.
“I’ve seen him do that a few times,” said Bishop. “He’s good for a couple of those a year.”
“It’s a nice goal, but in the end it really doesn’t matter if you lose,” Hemsky said. “The people reacted great.”
The Senators ended the first period tied 2-2 after getting off to a horrible start. Purcell, who hadn’t scored in his last 19 games, ended his drought just 23 seconds into the game.
NOTES: G Craig Anderson (upper body injury) and G Nathan Lawson (lower body injury) missed the game for Ottawa, and D Patrick Wiercioch and LW Matt Kassian were healthy scratches. … The Lightning signed free-agent forward Cody Kunyk to a one year, two-way NHL contract. Kunyk, 23, skated in 37 games for University of Alaska-Fairbanks this season, posting 22 goals and 43 points. … D Keith Aulie, D Mark Barberio, C Tom Pyatt and RW Nikita Kucherov were healthy scratches for Tampa Bay.