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Marching on: Senators beat Isles, clinch playoff berth
Uniondale, NY (Sports Network) - Kyle Turris finished with two goals and two assists as the Ottawa Senators blew past the New York Islanders, 5-1, to clinch a playoff spot.
Milan Michalek had a goal and two helpers, while Sergei Gonchar and Nick Foligno contributed a goal and an assist each for Ottawa, which has won four straight.
The Sens will return to the postseason after finishing in 13th place in the East with just 74 points last season. They have 92 points this season and are in seventh place, four ahead of Washington.
"It feels great. It's tough not being there," Senators defenseman Chris Phillips said of the return to the playoffs.
Craig Anderson posted 29 stops in the win.
Mark Streit scored the lone goal for the Islanders, who have lost two consecutive games. Al Montoya was tagged for all five goals on 32 shots in defeat.
"It leaves a sour taste in your mouth," Isles center John Tavares said. "It makes it real difficult watching it. We have to stay together, play hard and with a lot of pride."
New York opened the scoring 7:55 into the first frame after Tavares sent a pass from behind the net out front to Streit, who tapped it home to give the Isles the early lead.
The Sens knotted the game at one with 3:20 showing on the first period clock after Turris flew through the neutral zone with speed and ripped a shot on net from the left circle that was blocked. He collected his own rebound, though, and put it past Montoya from the right circle.
Skating with the extra man, the Senators took the lead for good 3:09 into the second frame when Turris sent a quick feed to the left circle for Michalek, who then flipped a deft backhand feed to a pinching Gonchar and he one-timed it home to give the Sens the 2-1 lead.
It was 3-1 for Ottawa at the six-minute mark of the second stanza when Michalek took the puck behind the net and stuffed home the wraparound try from the left of the net, and Foligno closed out the period when he poked in a rebound off a shot from the left point by Jesse Winchester to make it 4-1 with 6:39 left in the second frame.
Turris capped the scoring with a power-play goal at the seven-minute mark of the third period when he jammed home a rebound from in close off a shot by Foligno.
Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson missed the game due to flu-like symptoms, and forward Jason Spezza also missed the contest to attend the birth of his child...Ottawa improved to 9-5-3 this season in the second leg of back-to-back situations...New York will miss the playoffs for the fifth consecutive season, and has not participated in the postseason since a first round exit as the eighth seed in 2006-07...Ottawa went 2-for-3 on the power-play, while the Islanders failed to score on any of three opportunities on the man advantage.
04/01 21:31:08 ET