Rookie leads Senators to 3-1 series lead

Friday, April 28, 2006

TAMPA, Fla. -- So much for the Ottawa Senators being vulnerable in the first round of the NHL playoffs because of rookie goaltender Ray Emery.

Emery stopped 30 shots and Martin Havlat scored for the fourth straight game Thursday night, leading the Eastern Conference's top seed to a 5-2 victory that pushed the defending Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning to the brink of elimination.

The Senators lead the best-of-seven series 3-1 and can close it out by winning Game 5 in Ottawa on Saturday night.

To stay alive, the Lightning have to win three straight games against an opponent they have only beaten three times in 24 meetings over the past five seasons.

Dany Heatley had a goal and two assists for Ottawa, while Jason Spezza, Chris Phillips and Chris Neil each scored a goal. Havlat, who assisted on Heatley's goal, has eight points in the series after missing 58 regular season games with a dislocated shoulder.

-- AP

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