NHL Game Summary - Columbus at Pittsburgh|
(Saturday, April 26th)
Final Score: Pittsburgh 3, Columbus 1
Pittsburgh, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Jussi Jokinen scored to break a tie in
the third period and the Pittsburgh Penguins grabbed control of their Eastern
Conference opening-round series with a 3-1 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Kris Letang added an empty-net goal to seal the victory that gave the
Metropolitan Division champs a 3-2 lead in this best-of-seven set. Marc-Andre
Fleury made 23 saves for Pittsburgh, which can eliminate the Blue Jackets with
a win at Columbus on Monday.
"We have to realize they're going to be as desperate as they've been," said
Penguins captain Sidney Crosby. "It doesn't get any easier. We know the fourth
one is the toughest."
Sergei Bobrovsky gave the Blue Jackets a chance at returning home with a
series lead, registering 48 saves.
"It was one of those performances where you come into an opposing rink, that's
a game that your goaltender can steal for you," Columbus head coach Todd
Richards said. "We just weren't able to do enough in the offensive zone."
Bobrovsky made consecutive stops prior to Jokinen's backhand tap-in at the
6:16 mark of the third.
Fleury preserved the 2-1 lead with a nifty save on a Brandon Dubinsky
redirection with just under two minutes remaining.
The Blue Jackets called a timeout and pulled Bobrovsky with 1:49 left, but
Letang hit the empty net with 1:01 to play.
Boone Jenner opened the scoring with five seconds left on a first-period power
play. There was a scrum around the Pittsburgh crease and Fleury, down on his
belly, stretched out in an effort to cover the puck with his glove, but David
Savard poked it free. Jenner pounced on the loose puck near the left post at
The Columbus rookie had drawn the man advantage when he was slashed by Marcel
Goc, who made his series debut. The veteran forward sat out the first four
playoff games and final nine games of the regular season with a foot injury.
Pittsburgh responded with a power-play goal of its own in the second period.
Chris Kunitz planted himself in front of Bobrovsky, deflected Crosby's shot
and put home the rebound past an off-balance netminder at 7:42.
The team that scores first is 0-5 in this series ... Jenner has a point in
every game of this series ... Penguins defenseman Robert Bortuzzo made his NHL
playoff debut, replacing Brooks Orpik (undisclosed injury) ... Columbus
defensemen Fedor Tyutin (lower-body) and Ryan Murray (lower-body) each
returned to the lineup. Tyutin missed the previous two games, while Murray was
held out of Game 4.
04/27 02:36:44 ET