goal by Chorney lifts Capitals by Senators
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[January 02, 2017]
WASHINGTON -- Forget Alex
Ovechkin and the rest of the Washington Capitals' high-flying
forwards. It's the defenseman who have suddenly turned into scoring
Defensemen Taylor Chorney and Karl Alzner, neither of whom are known
for their offensive prowess, lit the lamp for the Capitals as they
opened a three-game home stand Sunday with a 2-1 triumph over the
Chorney has spent most of second season with the Capitals career as
a healthy scratch and Sunday was his seventh appearance of the
season. But with the score tied at 1 in the third, Chorney took a
pass from fellow defenseman Brooks Orpik at the point and fired a
shot through a host of bodies and past Senators goalie Mike Condon
to give Washington the lead for good with?17:17?remaining.
"It's a super-hard position to be in, the one that he's in," Alzner
said of Chorney. "He doesn't get to play a whole lot and every
single game he's played, he's been not just good, he's been great
and he still comes out of the lineup just because of the way the
team is built. It's nice to see him get rewarded. It's funny,
because I heard him say between the second and third, 'a GW
(game-winner) would be nice.' And sure enough, he got the
The tally was just the third goal in 130 career games for Chorney
and first since March 2 against Toronto. The Capitals have had seven
goals from their defenseman in their last 11 contests.
"Up here, you just try to go out there and be reliable and if you
get a chance to score a few goals here and there, you kind of take
them," Chorney said. "As defenseman, we can all skate and get out
there and guys have been making that a point. It's been working out
Washington had to stave off a 5-on-3 chance for Ottawa midway
through the third period and more than a minute of the Senators with
an extra attacker after pulling Condon in an attempt to gain the
equalizer. Capitals goalie Braden Holtby registered 23 saves in the
The Capitals have now killed 29 consecutive penalties after holding
the Senators to 0-for-4 with the extra man.
"You're never that confident," Trotz said of killing the 5-on-3. "If
anybody could do it, I do believe our PK is committed enough all
year, really, to get it done. And we got some big saves from
After an early stretch of the game that featured close calls and
missed opportunities, the stalemate finally broke in the second
period when Kyle Turris -- who had hit a post in the first -- took a
fantastic feed from Ryan Dzingel and flipped the puck past Holtby to
give the Senators a 1-0 advantage with 7:19 left in the second
It was Turris' 100th goal with Ottawa, but he and the rest of the
Senators were in no mood to celebrate milestones after the loss.
[to top of second column]
"It was frustrating," he said. "We had opportunities to at least tie
the game up, but definitely win the game. We have to score on the
5-on-3. Capitalizing on opportunities and we didn't do that tonight.
It's not coming together."
Ottawa had another scoring chance late in the second period when
Capitals forward Nicklas Backstrom was sent off for holding. But the
Senators' power play set up a shorthanded breakaway for Washington's
Justin Williams, whose shot ricocheted off Condon to T.J. Oshie.
Oshie found Alzner near the face-off dot and the defenseman fired a
blast by Condon to tie the score with 19.5 seconds left in the
"Those two goals are goals that we gave away," Senators coach Guy
Boucher said. "When you do one, you might get away with it, but you
give two like that, it comes to haunt you."
The Senators challenged whether Williams was offside, but the score
was upheld after review. It was just Alzner's third goal of the
season and his first since Nov. 1.
"It's the NHL," Condon said. "Everybody's here for a reason and
everybody can shoot the puck pretty well. They use their D pretty
well. They jump in the rush, and tonight Alzner came down pretty
aggressively on the first goal and then a pretty good one-timer from
Chorney. Those are good skill plays."
NOTES: Washington re-assigned F Jakub Vrana to AHL's Hershey on
Sunday. Vrana made his NHL debut on Dec. 1and scored one goal in 12
games with the Capitals. "We'll go day-by-day here," Washington
coach Barry Trotz said of Vrana's status. ... Ottawa will play next
on Jan. 7 due to its league-mandated break, but Senators coach Guy
Boucher doesn't believe his team will be affected. "Every team looks
at their break and can say something good or something bad about
it," he said. ... Senators F Chris Kelly appeared in his 500th game
with the club, only the 10th player in team history to reach that
mark. F Derick Brassard reached the 600-game milestone in his NHL
career. ... Sunday marked the 28th time the Capitals have played on
New Year's Day. Washington is 17-6-3-1 all time on Jan. 1. ...
Washington scratched D Nate Schmidt while Ottawa scratched D Fredrik
Claesson. ... Washington has now won four straight against Ottawa
and has earned points in seven consecutive games against the
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