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Leafs Fall Behind in Ottawa, Lose 6-1

From Official Toronto Maple Leafs

OTTAWA – The Ottawa Senators needed desperately for something to go right. Pretty much everything did Saturday.

Curtis Lazar had the first two-goal game of his career and Erik Karlsson had four assists as the Ottawa Senators embarrassed the Toronto Maple Leafs 6-1.

Lazar’s second goal of the night came at 2:27 of the third period and gave Ottawa a 6-0 lead. A little less than two minutes earlier Mark Stone had given them a 5-0 lead when he beat Jonathan Bernier high on the short side.

Zach Smith, Mika Zibanejad and Bobby Ryan also scored for the Senators (24-23-6), who got a 26-save performance from Craig Anderson.

“It was good for us from start to finish,” said Anderson. “A full 60 minutes and it was great to see and a great atmosphere to do it in.”

P.A. Parenteau scored at 3:25 of the third to break the shutout and account for the only goal from the Maple Leafs (19-23-9). Bernier finished with 14 saves after taking over from starter James Reimer, who was beaten three times on eight shots and was pulled 7:38 into the game.

A quick start and some good fortune propelled the Senators to a first-period lead, but more importantly a much needed win as the they snapped a three-game losing streak and collected just their second victory in their past seven outings.

They had been outscored 13-7 in two losses since the All-Star break.

“It was a different mindset,” said Anderson. “I think we’ve had enough of the (losses) and we were sick and tired of it and our mindset tonight was a complete 180.”

Smith opened the scoring just 19 seconds into the game when he completed a two-on-one rush with Marc Methot.

Just over four minutes later Zibanejad scored on a two-on-one with Jean-Gabriel Pageau, who took a pass from Erik Karlsson as he was leaving the penalty box following a minor penalty for boarding.

Ryan gave the Senators a 3-0 lead on a routine shot attempt from the face-off circle that completely eluded Reimer and ended his night.

“I don’t know how that squeaked in, but if I stop that maybe it’s a different game,” Reimer said. “I don’t think tonight was our best. Your job as the last line of defence is to stop the puck. The guys are trying and working their butts off and sometimes they make mistakes and that’s what your goalie is for. It’s too bad I couldn’t come up with a couple of big saves.”

“The third goal was a tough goal on (Reimer) but the reality is we left him hung out to dry and then Bernie came in and we did the same thing for Bernie,” said Leafs coach Mike Babcock.

Bernier took over and made a huge stop on Kyle Turris, who was making his return to the Ottawa lineup after missing six games with a lower-body injury.

Bernier made the original stop off Karlsson but was unable to stop the rebound as Lazar gave the Senators a 4-0 lead seven minutes into the second period.

“It wasn’t good from anyone tonight,” said Jake Gardiner. “We left (Reimer) out to dry in the first period and then Bernier the rest of the night.

“It just wasn’t a good game overall. It was everyone’s fault. We weren’t ready to play.”

While it was a good win, Karlsson said they have to take it in stride.

“We can’t get too high when we win one game just like we can’t get too low when we lose one. For us it was about hitting that reset button.”

Ottawa will conclude its three-game home stand Monday when it hosts the Tampa Bay Lightning. The Leafs will play the second of a five-game road trip when they visit the Calgary Flames Tuesday.

Notes: Toronto forward Tyler Bozak left in the first period with an upper-body injury and did not return… Defenceman Jared Cowen and Forward Nick Paul were scratches for the Senators while defenceman Martin Marincin was a scratch for the Maple Leafs… Paul and forward Ryan Dzingel were both recalled Saturday from Binghamton of the AHL… Reimer entered the game tied for second in the league with a .932 save percentage.

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