Lightning Skid vs Oilers
Tampa Bay Comeback Falls Short
The Tampa Bay Lightning battled back but fell short against the Edmonton Oilers, 5-3, tonight at Rexall Place in Edmonton.
The Lightning got off to a slow start as the game began, and Edmonton was able to jump to an early lead with just over two minutes gone in period one. Oiler forward Erik Cole skated in alone and beat Lightning netminder Karri Ramo just 2:20 after the puck dropped to start the game.
The Oilers extended their lead to 2-0 less than three minutes later as Jason Strudwick picked up a loose puck in the Lightning end and put the puck behind Ramo. The goal came at 5:40 and gave Edmonton two goals on three shots.
Tampa Bay made little offensive noise in the first period, collecting just three shots on net. The best scoring chances that the Bolts had never made the shot count as forward Adam Hall
’s wraparound attempt never made it to Oilers goaltender Dwayne Roloson and Martin St. Louis
launched a backhand shot over Roloson but it deflected off the cross-bar.
The period ended with Edmonton outshooting Tampa Bay by an 11-3 margin.
The Lightning, who had seen their share of leads disappear lately, decided to turn the tables and fight back in period two.
With Oilers forward Robert Nilsson in the penalty box for goaltender interference, Tampa Bay defenseman Cory Murphy collected his second goal of the season when he took a pass from St. Louis and, with Roloson out of position, found the Edmonton net. The goal, which cut the deficit to 2-1, was also assisted by Mark Recchi.
The Lightning continued their comeback at 12:23 of the second when Steven Stamkos
took a breakout pass from Ryan Malone
and, skating in alone on the Oilers net, roofed the puck over Roloson.
The hard-fought Lightning comeback stood for less than one minute as Edmonton defenseman Sheldon Souray’s shot from the point weaved through traffic and found the back of the net to give the lead back to the Oilers.
Even though they skated off the ice at the end of the second period down 3-2, the stanza was a good one for Tampa Bay. They had battled back to within striking distance and outshot Edmonton by 15-14.
The Oilers opened up another two goal lead with only 2:20 seconds gone in the final period when Andrew Cogliano scored to put Edmonton up, 4-2.
Karri Ramo made several outstanding saves throughout the third to keep the Lightning in the contest and his efforts were rewarded when Cory Murphy registered his second goal of the game at 13:46, assisted by Vincent Lecavalier
. The goal gave Murphy the first two-goal game of his career and brought Tampa Bay back to within one goal.
But that’s as close as the Bolts could come.
In spite of what was, by any measure, a valiant comeback effort, Tampa Bay couldn’t find the score to tie the game and, with Ramo on the bench for an extra attacker, Souray’s second goal of the game, into the empty net with only two seconds remaining, closed out the contest, 5-3.
Tampa Bay finished the game with 29 shots while allowing 45 for Edmonton. Lecavalier led the Lightning with five shots on net, followed by Steven Stamkos
with four. Ramo had 40 saves on the night.
Tampa Bay heads further west for their next road game, Friday night against the Vancouver Canucks, before wrapping up the road trip with a game against Calgary.
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