OTTAWA, Ontario — Even without some injured stars, the Ottawa Senators found enough offense and just enough defense to get two points.
Jean-Gabriel Pageau had a goal and two assists, Erik Karlsson added two assists and the Senators beat the Philadelphia Flyers 5-4 on Thursday night.
Tom Pyatt, Dion Phaneuf, Mark Borowiecki and Mark Stone also scored for Ottawa, and Craig Anderson made 36 saves. The Senators were without Bobby Ryan (broken finger), Zach Smith (upper body injury) and Kyle Turris (illness), and the three will also miss the next game at New Jersey on Friday.
“Coach addressed it and said sometimes adversity at the beginning of the year is a good thing,” Borowiecki said. “Obviously you never want to see guys hurt or sick but from a group perspective if you’re able to battle through that adversity earlier it can make you tighter going through the stretch.”
The Flyers appeared to score midway through the third period but after a coach’s challenge the goal was reversed due to goaltender interference.
“The last one, though, I’ve watched the puck go over the line and it’s 100 per cent a goal,” Flyers coach Dave Hakstol said. “I don’t know how that’s missed. That bothers me because our guys fought their rear ends off tonight to get back into this thing and tie this thing up. We tied it up. It’s there. I just watched it on our own video in the coaches’ room and it’s clear as day.”
Less than a minute later, Tom Pyatt scored at 10:33 to give the Senators a 5-2 lead before Ivan Provorov and Sean Couturier cut that lead to 5-4 with goals three minutes apart later in the period.
“We made it interesting for our fans and make sure they don’t leave their seats early,” Anderson said.
Jakub Voracek and Travis Konecny had the other goals for Philadelphia, while Michal Neuvirth stopped 22 shots.
After falling behind 3-0 in the first period the Flyers clawed their way back scoring twice in a 53-second span late in the second period. Stone responded with 2 1/2 minutes left, giving the Senators the 4-2 lead they carried into the final period.
“We’ve been facing a lot of adversity with a lot of key players missing. It gives guys a chance to step up and everybody that the guys are coming up and ready to play,” Pageau said. “It’s a big win for us.”
Voracek scored his first of the season with 5 1/2 to go in the second when his shot from behind the net hit Phaneuf at the top of the crease and bounced in behind Anderson cutting the lead to 3-1.
Seconds later Konecny was sent in alone with a stretch pass from Radko Gudas and he beat Anderson to the stick side with a shot from the hash marks with 4:37 remaining.
That goal allowed Konecny to make up for his errant pass that led to a short-handed goal from Pageau in the first period that gave the Senators a 3-0 lead.
Karlsson picked off the pass near his own blue line and carried the puck into the Flyers’ end before setting up Pageau for his first goal of the season at 13:28.
Prior to that Borowiecki also scored his first of the season at 9:50 of the first when his attempted pass to Pyatt went off the stick of Flyers’ defenseman Travis Sanheim and past Neuvirth.
Phaneuf had opened the scoring at 1:31 on the power play when his floater from the point eluded Neuvirth and into the top corning for a 1-0 Ottawa lead.
NOTES: Kyle Turris and Jack Rodewald were scratches for the Senators. … Nolan Patrick and Dale Weise sat out for the Flyers. … Filip Chlapik made his NHL debut Thursday and recorded his first NHL point when he assisted on the Senators’ opening goal.
Flyers: At Toronto on Saturday.
Senators: At New Jersey on Friday.