Tampa Bay Lightning
Tampa Bay
Lightning
43-33-6
Carolina
Hurricanes
52-22-8

24 SOG
30 SOG
1st2nd3rdT
TBL
CAR
game recap

Hurricanes 6, Lightning 4

Tuesday, 06.19.2012 / 2:21 AM

Associated Press

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - How badly does Eric Staal want on Team Canada? Consider his latest effort for the Carolina Hurricanes.

``He's trying to yell it as loud as he can,'' Carolina coach Peter Laviolette said. ``He's standing on top of the mountain, screaming. I don't know if anybody will hear, but you've got to love the way he took charge of the game.''

Staal scored two goals and had a brilliant assist to set up Matt Cullen's go-ahead goal seconds after Carolina wasted a two-man advantage, and the Hurricanes held on to beat the Tampa Bay Lightning 6-4 Tuesday night.

The Canadian Olympic team will be announced Wednesday - two days after the United States named a roster that included Staal's linemate, Erik Cole - so this was the final chance for Staal to make his case. His first multi-goal game since Nov. 29 helped Carolina take a seven-point lead in the Southeast Division.

``We'll see what happens,'' Staal said. ``Obviously, it's in the back of your mind. Hopefully, I made it pretty tough for them not to take me. If not, I'll be ready the next time around.''

It was his effort early in the third period that likely saved this one for the Hurricanes. They had 57 seconds of 5-on-3 when defenseman Nolan Pratt was called for hooking about halfway through a Lightning penalty for too many men on the ice, but goaltender Sean Burke held Carolina at bay.

Then with Pratt still in the box, Staal took the puck deep in his own end and raced up the ice, going right past defenseman Cory Sarich.

``That's something we've become pretty accustomed to here,'' Cole said. ``He's a tremendous player, and he's been doing that all year.''

As he skated by the net, Staal centered a pass to Cullen just outside of the crease, and he beat Burke easily to give the Hurricanes the lead. Justin Williams and Cole each had a goal and an assist, while Cory Stillman added two assists against his former team on his 32nd birthday.

``Some guys are trending upward, some guys are trending downward,'' Tampa Bay coach John Tortorella said. ``We just haven't been able to get everybody going at the same time.''

Carolina took a 4-2 lead in the second period before Tampa Bay rallied in the final 4 minutes. First, Ryan Craig scored on the power play, giving him goals in the first two games of his career and cutting the margin in half. The Hurricanes appeared they would take that to the second intermission when goaltender Martin Gerber stopped Evgeny Artyukhin from close range in the final 10 seconds.

But Martin St. Louis stole the puck after the ensuing faceoff and skated in alone on Gerber, and his backhand went into the top of the net to tie it at 4.

``We fought hard there and went into the third, and all of a sudden, there are some penalties,'' Burke said. ``And it was over. I don't know how to describe it.''

Carolina bounced right back with Cullen's third goal in the past four games, all since he went 19 games without one. Williams added the clincher about nine minutes later on the power play.

Staal, who slipped to ninth among the NHL's scoring leaders during a recent slump, got started after Fredrik Modin gave the Lightning a 1-0 barely 3 1/2 minutes into the game. He took Cole's pass in front of the net, and when Burke stopped his first shot, Staal stuffed in the rebound off both posts.

Later, with the score 2-2, he dug the puck out of the corner and shot quickly to give the Hurricanes the lead, and they stretched it to 4-2 when Cole scored in the second period.

``It was a big game for us,'' Laviolette said. ``For him to be a dominating player like that, against a good team, that says a lot about how far he has come as a player in this league. He's not watching anymore. He's part of the reason why we're having the success we are.''

Notes: Hurricanes D Andrew Hutchinson scored in the first period, his first goal of the season. ... Lightning LW Ruslan Fedotenko didn't dress for the second straight because of a strained left hip. ... Carolina D Aaron Ward played despite taking a puck in the neck during the morning skate. ... The teams play again Monday night in Tampa Bay.

scoring summary
1st Period
03:36
TBL
PPG - Freddy Modin (16) Wrist shot - ASST: Brad Richards (26), Vinny Prospal (24)
1 - 0 TBL
06:41
CAR
Eric Staal (23) Tip-in - ASST: Erik Cole (17), Cory Stillman (23)
1 - 1 Tie
08:38
CAR
PPG - Andrew Hutchinson (1) Slapshot - ASST: Justin Williams (16), Matt Cullen (9)
2 - 1 CAR
08:54
TBL
Vinny Prospal (15) Slapshot - ASST: Vincent Lecavalier (21), Rob DiMaio (8)
2 - 2 Tie
18:15
CAR
Eric Staal (24) Snap shot - ASST: Justin Williams (17), Frantisek Kaberle (13)
3 - 2 CAR
2nd Period
07:51
CAR
Erik Cole (10) Tip-in - ASST: Cory Stillman (24), Oleg Tverdovsky (10)
4 - 2 CAR
16:27
TBL
PPG - Ryan Craig (2) Wrist shot - ASST: Evgeny Artyukhin (7), Martin St. Louis (15)
4 - 3 CAR
19:53
TBL
Martin St. Louis (13) Backhand shot - ASST: Brad Richards (27)
4 - 4 Tie
3rd Period
03:05
CAR
PPG - Matt Cullen (10) Tip-in - ASST: Eric Staal (23)
5 - 4 CAR
12:10
CAR
PPG - Justin Williams (13) Tip-in - ASST: Rod Brind'Amour (16), Oleg Tverdovsky (11)
6 - 4 CAR
penalty summary
1st Period
02:37
CAR
Niklas Nordgren  Hooking against  Chris Dingman
07:39
TBL
Pavel Kubina  Tripping against  Rod Brind'Amour
12:07
TBL
Paul Ranger  Interference against  Cory Stillman
2nd Period
00:47
TBL
Evgeny Artyukhin  Hi-sticking against  Ray Whitney
03:09
CAR
Glen Wesley  Hooking against  Darren Reid
04:51
TBL
Rob DiMaio  Interference against  Frantisek Kaberle
12:26
TBL
Vinny Prospal  Tripping against  Justin Williams
15:02
CAR
Rod Brind'Amour  Hooking against  Martin St. Louis
3rd Period
00:51
TBL
Martin St. Louis  Too many men/ice - bench
01:54
TBL
Nolan Pratt  Hooking against  Rod Brind'Amour
05:26
CAR
Aaron Ward  Hooking against  Darren Reid
10:38
TBL
Evgeny Artyukhin  Boarding against  Aaron Ward
15:26
TBL
Evgeny Artyukhin  Closing hand on puck
17:50
CAR
Mike Commodore  Hooking against  Freddy Modin
19:52
CAR
Aaron Ward  Holding the stick against  Martin St. Louis
goalie stats
Sean Burke
SA: 30TOI: 58:17
Saves: 24EV: 15 - 18
PIM: 0PP: 9 - 12
SV%: .800SH: 0 - 0
Martin Gerber
Martin Gerber
SA: 24TOI: 59:57
Saves: 20EV: 11 - 13
PIM: 0PP: 9 - 11
SV%: .833SH: 0 - 0