Aho’s 2nd of game lifts Hurricanes over Flames 2-1 in OT
Dec 9, 2021, 7:25 AM | Updated: Dec 10, 2021, 4:05 am
(Jeff McIntosh/The Canadian Press via AP)
CALGARY, Alberta (AP) — Sebastian Aho scored his second goal of the game 4:07 into overtime to give the Carolina Hurricanes a 2-1 victory over the Calgary Flames on Thursday night.
Aho sped into the Calgary zone while being pressured by former teammate Elias Lindholm. Aho lost control of the puck, but it still had enough momentum to slide past goalie Jacob Markstrom.
“I had some space and time to build up my speed and I decided early on to take that guy 1-on-1. But they made a nice switch there, little bit of side pressure,” Aho said. “(He) kind of caught me already but I got a break there, so it felt good.”
Markstrom said he thought Aho was going to cut across to the middle of the ice, so he attempted to poke-check the puck off his stick.
“I came really fast and I wanted to have my momentum with me if he was going to drag it across to the other side,” said Markstrom, who made 24 saves. “I felt like he wanted to do that and then Lindy caught him a little bit and he kind of lost the puck. I tried to poke it in the corner and my momentum was going the other way and it hit his skate or stick or whatever and went over my pad and in the net.”
Aho also scored in the first period for the Hurricanes (18-6-1) to extend his point streak to four games. Frederik Andersen stopped 26 shots in the win.
“I think guys played awesome today,” Andersen said. “We weren’t giving up a lot. We stuck with it all game and eventually got the break. Our patience was really good this evening.”
Playing against his former team, defenseman Noah Hanifin scored for the Flames (15-6-6) but was unable to convert on an early penalty shot.
“Usually guys have that little extra bump in their game,” Calgary coach Darryl Sutter said about Hanifin facing his old club. “I thought he skated really well and did what he could.”
Calgary has dropped three in a row.
The Hurricanes have allowed the fewest goals (55) in the NHL, while the Flames are second (57).
“I think both teams play pretty responsibly and have a lot of structure when they’re playing the right way,” Hanifin said. “We’re a team that expects to win. We believe in our group. We go into games, we’re believing we’re going to win the hockey game, so it’s frustrating.”
Aho opened the scoring when he redirected a pass from Jaccob Slavin past Markstrom at 4:14 of the first period.
The Flames had a great chance to tie it at 5:33 when Hanifin was awarded a penalty shot after being hooked from behind by Ian Cole on a partial breakaway. Andersen got his stick on the puck and it trickled wide.
Calgary had a couple more good chances late in the opening period on the power play, but Matthew Tkachuk chipped the puck just wide before crashing into the net and Andersen stood his ground to stop a shot from the slot by Andrew Mangiapane.
The Flames tied it on Hanifin’s second goal of the season when his shot from the point glanced off the stick of Carolina forward Jesper Fast and beat a stunned Andersen over his left shoulder.
Early in the third, Calgary forward Dillon Dube’s shot from the slot glanced off the post behind Andersen and was trickling across the goal line when Carolina forward Teuvo Teravainen reached back to pull it out before clearing it out of harm’s way.
“The guys made some great plays on those going through or behind me,” Andersen said. “That’s awesome. I’ll take the help, sometimes. Just great plays.”
Slavin also made a terrific play late in the game to prevent a goal. Calgary defenseman Rasmus Andersson tried to center the puck from behind the net, but it hit Slavin in the leg and was heading into the net before the Carolina defenseman reached back to swat it away with his stick.
Slavin logged a game-high 32:28 of ice time.
“I can’t be more impressed about an individual,” Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour said. “This is just kind of icing on the cake that he can do this. It’s obviously not something we want to do, but we’re missing some great players here.”
NOTES: Although Carolina defensemen Brett Pesce and Tony DeAngelo were cleared to practice earlier this week after being in COVID-19 protocol, they didn’t make the trip to Canada for the game. Pesce and DeAngelo will also miss Carolina’s next two road games against Edmonton on Saturday and Vancouver on Sunday. … Fellow Hurricanes defenseman Ethan Bear also missed Thursday’s game due to a non-COVID-19 illness.
Hurricanes: At the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday in the third of a five-game trip.
Flames: Host the Boston Bruins on Saturday.
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