- Associated Press - Thursday, December 3, 2015

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) - After Tampa Bay had two goals waved off by the officials during the second period, coach Jon Cooper figured the Lightning were due for some luck.

Jonathan Marchessault provided it and got the Lightning’s California road trip off to a solid start.

Marchessault scored the tiebreaking power-play goal, and Jonathan Drouin had a goal and an assist in his return from a six-game injury absence in Tampa Bay’s 2-1 victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday night.

Ben Bishop made 32 saves for the Lightning, who opened the three-game West Coast trip with their fourth victory in six games.

Bishop was solid throughout a defense-dominated game, and the Lightning beat the Ducks for the fourth straight time and the second time in two weeks, following a 5-0 win in Tampa. The Lightning improved to 7-0-4 against the Ducks since January 2009.

Tampa Bay thought it had scored two more goals. The first was waved off on video review after Nikita Kucherov’s stick was determined to be too high, and the second was negated by Ryan Callahan’s interference in front of John Gibson’s net - a call upheld after a coach’s challenge from Cooper.

“I knew we had a couple taken off the board,” Cooper said. “I did think it was a little justice that we scored right after that on the power play.”

Marchessault scored moments later on a sharp pass from Drouin, who had put the Lightning ahead in the first period with a tough shot through traffic.

Drouin hadn’t scored in 11 games since Oct. 12, and he hadn’t played since Nov. 14 during his second lengthy injury absence of the season.

“Mentally, you just don’t feel part of the group” while injured, Drouin said. “Coming back from injury, sometimes you’re a little nervous, but I felt really comfortable.”

Corey Perry scored and Gibson stopped 20 shots for the Ducks, who have lost three of four. Anaheim lost in regulation at home for just the second time in 11 games despite dominating play for long stretches of the final two periods.

“There’s a lot of good things that happened in that game, but when you give up two goals in the second period, it’s tough,” Perry said. “We were right there with them. If not for one bounce at the end of the game, it would have been a different story.”

Indeed, Cam Fowler nearly scored the tying goal with about 10 seconds left, but his deflected shot clanged off Bishop’s post.

The Ducks took another step back in a meeting of two teams with Stanley Cup aspirations currently struggling through the early season. Tampa Bay won the Eastern Conference after the best regular season in club history, while the Ducks won the Pacific Division and fell one game shy of meeting the Lightning in the Stanley Cup Final.

“If you’re looking for territorial edge or any of that, I thought we outplayed them,” Anaheim coach Bruce Boudreau said. “But in the end, we’ve got to come up with the win, and it seems to be eluding us on a regular basis. I mean, we can talk about how well we’re playing against good teams and doing the right things, but the two points is most necessary at this point.”

Perry tied it 100 seconds after Drouin’s goal with a close-range rebound for his ninth goal of the season, but his partnership with captain Ryan Getzlaf and Rickard Rakell on the Ducks’ top line didn’t score again despite combining for 13 shots on Bishop.

Center Nate Thompson made his season debut for the Ducks, returning six months after surgery to repair a labrum tear in his shoulder. Thompson spent 4 1/2 years with the Lightning before moving to Anaheim last season.

NOTES: U.S. men’s national soccer coach and longtime Orange County resident Jurgen Klinsmann attended the game. … Anaheim scratched LW Patrick Maroon to make room for Thompson. … Tampa Bay C Tyler Johnson missed his second straight game, and C Cedric Paquette sat out his seventh straight game. … D Nikita Nesterov returned to the Lightning’s lineup for the first time since Nov. 5, suiting up as a seventh defenseman.

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