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Sens hope to hold off spoiler-happy Flames
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Ottawa Senators won for just the second time in nine games last time out to keep their slim playoff chances alive. They face a tough task on Sunday evening, however, as they host a Calgary Flames team that has taken to the role of spoiler as of late.
The Senators have 74 points with nine games to play, leaving them eight points back of Columbus and Detroit for the two wild card spots in the Eastern Conference. Ottawa has done little to help its cause as of late, going 2-4-3 over the last nine contests.
Both wins have come in Ottawa's last three games and the club picked up a big 5-3 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks on Friday to begin a five-game homestand.
Clarke MacArthur notched his 23rd goal of the season and tallied two assists. Kyle Turris also lit the lamp for the 23rd time this season and the duo are tied with Bobby Ryan for the club lead.
Ryan, though, won't play again this season after undergoing sports hernia surgery this week.
Erik Condra, Cody Ceci and Milan Michalek all added goals on Friday and Craig Anderson made 46 saves in his first start since March 10. He had been out with an upper-body injury.
"The bottom line is, we got two points and we found a way to win, and that's all that really matters," said Anderson. "We played pretty solid and for the most part we did what it took to get the job done."
Anderson should get the start this evening and is 6-6-0 lifetime versus the Flames with a 2.45 goals against average.
Calgary has thrived on impacting the playoff race over the last few weeks despite being well out of contention. The Flames have won six of their last nine games and bested the playoff-hopeful New York Rangers 4-3 on Friday.
Mike Cammalleri notched the deciding tally late in the second period, taking a kick pass from defenseman Chris Butler up the right wing. Cammalleri then skated into the zone and beat New York's Henrik Lundqvist through the pads with 7.8 ticks on the clock.
"That's an opportunity maybe to get a shot off in stride where you might not usually," Cammalleri said. "I just tried to shoot it in stride the best I could. I thought by our [defense] making a quick up-play there, we were able to create a gap. Their [defense] got caught."
Karri Ramo did the rest and finished with 38 saves, while Joe Colborne, Mark Giordano and Kevin Westgarth added goals.
The Flames did lose defenseman Ladislav Smid to an upper-body injury on Friday in the opener of a five-game road trip.
Ramo could start again today and is 0-2-1 with a 3.88 GAA in five career games versus the Senators, including two starts.
The Flames have won nine of their past 12 versus the Senators, including a 4-1 victory in Calgary on March 5.
03/30 09:17:58 ET
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