Friday, May 03, 2002

Leafs shut out at home

Senators 5, Maple Leafs 0

AP Sports Writer

Toronto Maple Leafs' Darcy Tucker lands on his face after attempting a check on Ottawa Senators' Chris Phillips.
(AP photo)
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        TORONTO — Now that the Ottawa Senators have proven they can beat Toronto in the playoffs, they're focused on the next step — beating them again.

        “It's only one game,” said Senators goaltender Patrick Lalime. “It's a long series. You want to enjoy it when it's done. But you've got to move on and prepare yourself for the next one.”

        Lalime, who stopped 27 shots, and the rested Senators were certainly prepared on Thursday, opening the Eastern Conference semifinals with a 5-0 win over the exhausted and battered Maple Leafs.

        Game 2 of the best-of-seven series is Saturday at Toronto.

        Lalime became only the 14th goalie to record four shutouts in one postseason after notching three in the first-round series against Philadelphia.

        The victory also snapped the Senators six-game losing streak against the Maple Leafs, and was their first win in Toronto in six postseason visits.

        So much for those believing the Senators had been hexed by Toronto, which had eliminated Ottawa in the past two playoffs.

        “We came in trying to win Game 1 and go from there,” Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson said. “It's done. We've got to look forward.”

        Alfredsson and Martin Havlat had a goal and two assists each as the Senators set a franchise record for most goals in a playoff game.

        The rout was on early, as Havlat, Radek Bonk and Shane Hnidy each scored before the game was 12 minutes old.

        Todd White rounded out the scoring.

        It helped that the Senators, who won their fifth straight, were playing their first game in six days after eliminating Philadelphia in the first round.

        Toronto had just one day off after eliminating the New York Islanders in a grueling and physical seven-game series.

        The Maple Leafs were also missing three regulars, including captain Mats Sundin (wrist). After coming out flat, they then grew discouraged as the score mounted against them.

        The Senators capitalized on three of 12 power-play chances.

        The Leafs have now allowed 14 power-play goals in 50 opportunities.

        “It was one of those nights,” Maple Leafs forward Gary Roberts said. “The calls went against us. And a lot of it was our own doing.”

        Roberts was already focusing on the next game.

        “We know we weren't very good. We know they were very good,” he said. “We have nothing else to say except that we know we have to get some energy back and get ourselves ready for Saturday night.”

        Toronto did get two pucks past Lalime, but neither counted.

        Shayne Corson's goal was disallowed 5:39 into the third period when Tie Domi was penalized for goaltender interference, crashing headfirst into Lalime before the puck entered the net.

        Toronto's Jyrki Lumme then scored milliseconds after the final buzzer sounded.

        Havlat and Bonk scored 80 seconds apart to put Ottawa ahead 2-0 9:04 into the game, capitalizing on a four-minute highsticking penalty to Alexander Mogilny.

        Hnidy made it 3-0 four minutes later on a goal that was allowed to stand following a video review, which showed the puck trickling over the goal line before goalie Curtis Joseph could fall on it.

        When Hnidy scored, the Senators had as many goals as the Maple Leafs had shots.

        The Senators aren't taking anything for granted, especially against a veteran team like the Maple Leafs.

        “I'm sure they'll come out hungry,” Lalime said. “We've got to expect the best. We've got to be ready for it and keep playing the same way.”

        Lalime has now allowed only two goals in 375 minutes, a span in which he's stopped 162 of the 164 shots he's faced.

        Notes: New Jersey's Martin Brodeur recorded four shutouts in 25 playoff games last year. ... Sundin, who hasn't ruled out returning for the Senators' series, skated for the first time earlier in the day since missing Games 4, 5, 6 and 7 of Toronto's first-round series against the New York Islanders. ... The three-goal first period not only matched a Senators franchise playoff record for most goals in a period, but equaled Ottawa's four-game total in last year's first-round series loss to Toronto.


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