- The Washington Times - Saturday, March 28, 2009

ATLANTA (AP) - Ilya Kovalchuk netted his 40th goal and the Atlanta Thrashers scored three times in less than three minutes of the second period to beat the Ottawa Senators 6-3 on Saturday night.

The Thrashers, who have won two straight and eight of 11, broke open a 2-2 game on goals by Tobias Enstrom, Marty Reasoner and Colby Armstrong in a span of 2:58.

Enstrom, who had two assists, scored his fifth goal on a power play at 13:12, giving Atlanta a 3-2 edge. Reasoner added his 13th goal 1:12 later before Armstrong notched his 19th 54 seconds later for a 5-2 lead.

Jason Spezza had two of Ottawa’s goals, giving him 29 this season, in the first period.

Kovalchuk, who also had an assist on Enstrom’s goal, scored his milestone goal with 10 seconds left in the opening period. The seven-year veteran, who has had at least 40 in five consecutive seasons, registered four goals and five assists in his last four games. Nathan Oystrick scored earlier in the period for Atlanta.



Spezza assisted on Ryan Shannon’s power-play goal at 1:50 of the third period. It was Shannon’s seventh of the season and third in three games for the Senators, who lost their second straight after winning five in a row.

Atlanta’s Slava Kozlov, who had two assists, scored his 24th goal on a power play at 9:23 of the third period.

Todd White and Eric Perrin each had a pair of assists and Armstrong also had an assist for the Thrashers. Johan Hedberg recorded his 100th career victory by making 18 saves.

Ottawa rookie goalie Brian Elliott was removed after Reasoner’s goal. He gave up four goals on 21 shots. His replacement Alex Auld allowed Armstrong’s goal on the first shot he faced.

Ottawa’s Nick Foligno had an assist, giving him two goals and four assists in five games.

Notes:@ Atlanta G Kari Lehtonen didn’t play after injuring his upper body and leaving following the first period of Thursday night’s 5-4 shootout win over the New York Rangers. … Kovalchuk, who has 294 career goals, has 10 goals and 15 assists in his last 13 games. … Elliott was 11-1-2 in his previous 17 games.

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