Senators come back to win in OT, end Capitals’ win streak

Dec 29, 2022, 4:51 AM | Updated: 7:30 pm
Washington Capitals goaltender Darcy Kuemper stops the puck during the second period of the team's ...

Washington Capitals goaltender Darcy Kuemper stops the puck during the second period of the team's NHL hockey game against the Ottawa Senators, Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

(AP Photo/Nick Wass)

              Washington Capitals goaltender Darcy Kuemper stops the puck during the second period of the team's NHL hockey game against the Ottawa Senators, Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
            
              Ottawa Senators center Mark Kastelic (47) crashes into Washington Capitals goaltender Darcy Kuemper (35) and defenseman Matt Irwin (52) during the third period of an NHL hockey game, Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022, in Washington. Capitals defenseman Alexander Alexeyev, right, looks on(AP Photo/Nick Wass)
            
              Ottawa Senators right wing Alex DeBrincat (12) celebrates after his winning goal with defenseman Jake Sanderson (85) in overtime of an NHL hockey game against the Washington Capitals, Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
            
              Ottawa Senators right wing Alex DeBrincat (12) celebrates after his goal with right wing Drake Batherson (19) during the third period of an NHL hockey game against the Washington Capitals, Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
            
              Ottawa Senators right wing Alex DeBrincat (12) celebrates after his winning goal with teammates in overtime of an NHL hockey game against the Washington Capitals, Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
            
              Ottawa Senators defenseman Travis Hamonic (23) passes the puck against Washington Capitals left wing Sonny Milano (15) during the first period of an NHL hockey game, Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
            
              The puck flies by Washington Capitals goaltender Darcy Kuemper (35) next to Ottawa Senators left wing Brady Tkachuk (7) during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022, in Washington. Capitals defenseman Erik Gustafsson is at right. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
            
              Washington Capitals goaltender Darcy Kuemper defends the net against Ottawa Senators left wing Tim Stützle (18) during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
            
              Ottawa Senators defenseman Jake Sanderson (85) shoots the puck against Washington Capitals left wing Conor Sheary (73) and left wing Marcus Johansson (90) during the second period of an NHL hockey game Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022, in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Alex DeBrincat tied the game and scored in overtime to help the Ottawa Senators snap the Capitals’ five game winning streak, beating Washington 4-3 Thursday night.

Tim Stutzle scored with 15.3 seconds remaining in the second period to start Ottawa’s comeback from a two-goal deficit. DeBrincat tied the score with 5:43 left in regulation and won it 1:31 into 3-on-3 OT.

“I thought we played well,” said DeBrincat, a 41-goal scorer last season with Chicago who now has 13 through 35 games with the Senators. “They’re a good team. They’ve been on a hot streak right now, and we did a good job of shutting them down for the most part.”

Cam Talbot bounced back from allowing two goals on the first eight shots he faced to make 22 saves. Rookie defenseman Jake Sanderson also scored to help the Senators win a second game in a row.

“We battled back,” Sanderson said. “Thought there was probably like five minutes throughout the game where we weren’t ourselves, but we battled back and we felt like we deserved this one.”

Alex Ovechkin scored his 23rd goal of the season and 803rd of his career for Washington, which lost for the first time since Dec. 15. Dylan Strome and Evgeny Kuznetsov also scored for the Capitals, and Darcy Kuemper made 41 saves in his second consecutive start.

“Obviously, he was stunning tonight and he was stunning (Tuesday) against New York,” Ovechkin said. “It’s tough loss, it’s on us and we can’t do that.”

The Capitals were in a giving mood in their second game after the NHL’s holiday break, handing the Senators several quality scoring chances on odd-man rushes and breakaways. The stingy defense that was the backbone of their run of 10 victories in 11 games faltered in several instances, and Kuemper, despite some big stops, could not bail out his teammates.

“They were the better team tonight from the start to the end,” coach Peter Laviolette said. “Lesson to be learned for us that we can’t come out that way.”

After rolling along amid several injury absences, the accumulation caught up to Washington in the second consecutive game without top defenseman John Carlson, who took a puck to the face and is out indefinitely, and fifth in a row without winger T.J. Oshie, who has an upper-body injury.

The Senators have been dealing with plenty of injuries, too, but are slowly creeping up the Eastern Conference standings after some big offseason expectations and a slow start. This victory was thanks in large part to veteran free agent addition Claude Giroux, who dived to keep the puck in on Stutzle’s goal and assisted on DeBrincat’s overtime winner.

“He’s a really, really competitive guy,” coach D.J. Smith said. “He did his job, and when he got his chance, he made good on it.”

NOTES: Capitals defenseman Erik Gustafsson extended his point streak to six games. Kuznetsov is on a four-game point streak. … Washington assistant coach Scott Allen missed the game because of COVID-19 protocol. Center Nicklas Backstrom, who appears to be nearing his season debut after offseason hip surgery, went into protocol Wednesday.

UP NEXT

Senators: Visit the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday night.

Capitals: Host the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday afternoon.

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Follow AP Hockey Writer Stephen Whyno on Twitter at https://twitter.com/SWhyno

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AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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