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Schneider's overtime strike pays off for Canadiens

Associated Press / February 28, 2009
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Mathieu Schneider was able to do for Montreal on the final shot of the game what Philadelphia failed to achieve in eight tries.

Score on the power play.

Schneider scored with a man advantage at 3:21 of overtime to give the Canadiens a 4-3 victory over the host Flyers last night.

"I just tried to hang on and just get a wrister through with a screen," Schneider said.

He caught a break when Scottie Upshall was sent off for goalie interference. Recently acquired from Atlanta to quarterback the power play, Schneider scored his seventh goal on a wrister from the right circle. It was Montreal's first goal since it scored three times in a 2:04 span in the first period. Upshall argued the call on and said it was unfair, especially so late in OT.

"I didn't think I went in and intentionally hit the goalie," Upshall said. "From one angle, it looked like I might have clipped the back of his mask, but I know I hit the back of his leg. I got tripped up."

The Flyers outshot the Canadiens, 37-31, in regulation, but wasted all eight power-play attempts. Philadelphia, which had converted an NHL-high 32 percent of its home power-play chances, failed to convert on both of its five-on-three advantages.

Montreal made the most of the game's final power play when Schneider spoiled what had been a strong performance by goalie Antero Niittymaki.

Niittymaki, locked in a battle with Martin Biron for the starting goalie job, stopped 32 shots. Jaroslav Halak settled down in the net for Montreal after allowing two quick goals to open the game, finishing with 35 saves.

Penguins 5, Blackhawks 4 - NHL points leader Evgeni Malkin scored on a power play at 1:36 of overtime to give visiting Pittsburgh a victory.

Malkin ripped a one-timer from the right circle past rookie Antti Niemi after taking a pass from Sergei Gonchar. Malkin connected with two seconds left on a penalty to Chicago's Kris Versteeg.

The Blackhawks rebounded from 2-0 and 4-2 deficits to force overtime. Chicago's Dave Bolland chipped in Andrew Ladd's pass with 4:45 left in the third to tie it at 4.

Jonathan Toews scored Chicago's first three goals - all on power plays - for his first NHL hat trick. He leads the team with 25 goals, one more than he had as a rookie last season in 64 games.

Pittsburgh's Marc-Andre Fleury made 41 saves. He stopped 18 of 20 shots in the third period.

Flames 4, Wild 1 - Mike Cammalleri scored twice and Miikka Kiprusoff made 15 saves to help host Calgary win its fourth straight.

Jamie Lundmark also scored for Calgary, which has picked up points in nine straight games.

Red Wings 2, Kings 1 - Chris Osgood made 30 saves in his return to Detroit's lineup after a four-game break, leading the Stanley Cup champions over visiting Los Angeles.

Canucks 2, Lightning 1 - Steve Bernier scored the go-ahead goal midway through the third period, and the Canucks kept Tampa Bay winless in Vancouver.

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