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Senators top Habs in OT to set team record win streak

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The Canadian Press
1/31/2010 12:47:20 AM
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OTTAWA -- The Ottawa Senators made history Saturday afternoon with a 3-2 overtime win over the Montreal Canadiens, but it came at a price.

With the win the Senators set a franchise-record nine-game winning streak, but they will be without winger Nick Foligno for the next 6-8 weeks as he suffered a broken right leg late in the third period. Foligno left the game after blocking a shot from Montreal defenceman Marc-Andre Bergeron.

"It's very disappointing," said Senators general manager Bryan Murray. "It's disappointing for him as he was just starting to play well and carry a lot of ice time for us. For him to go down that way it's hard for him."

The Senators (31-21-4) have dealt with injuries to a number of key players over the course of the season and still managed to find ways to win. Murray is hopeful the same will happen this time around.

Mike Fisher scored the winner 3:33 into overtime after the Canadiens (25-26­­-5) forced the extra period on a power-play goal by Brian Gionta with less than three minutes remaining in regulation.

The Canadiens may have also suffered more than just a loss as Mike Cammalleri left the game late in the third with what appeared to be a right leg injury.

Cammalleri is the Canadiens' leading goal-scorer and his absence would be a huge blow to the team.

"He'll be evaluated Sunday," said Montreal coach Jacques Martin. "We'll wait and see what the injury is."

Brian Elliott extended his winning streak to seven games with a 27-save performance and is largely responsible for the Senators recent success.

Ottawa hasn't given up more than two goals a game during its winning streak.

"We didn't play as well defensively tonight as we have been," said Fisher. "Elliott played great and he kept us in it. It was a good win."

Alex Kovalev and Jason Spezza each scored in regulation for the Senators.

Considering that just a few weeks ago the Senators were mired in a five-game losing streak the turnaround is quite exceptional.

"I think it's a lot of guys contributing to make this thing possible," said Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson. "We're just taking it day-by-day and try to keep this thing going and try to make as big a gap as we can behind us."

Jaroslav Halak stopped 34 shots and Benoit Pouliot had the other goal for Montreal (25-26-5).

Kovalev opened the scoring late in the first scoring on a great feed from defenceman Filip Kuba. Kuba found Kovalev at the side of the net and Kovalev beat Halak short-side.

The Senators made it 2-0 midway through the second on a power-play goal by Spezza, his fourth in as many games. It also marked the Senators' first goal with the man advantage in four games.

"It was a hard-fought game both ways," said Spezza.

Montreal cut the lead in half with a power-play goal of its own as Pouliot beat Elliott low stick side.

The Canadiens have now gone three games without scoring a goal five-on-five.

"I think both teams were pretty even five-on-five as far as chances," said Martin. "I think for 60 minutes we had a pretty good performance even after missing certain players."

Ottawa will look to make it 10 straight when they take on the Buffalo Sabres Wednesday night.

Notes: The Senators were without C Jesse Winchester (right knee, mid-February), G Pascal Leclaire (concussion, indefinite). ... D Alexandre Picard and LW Shean Donovan were a healthy scratch for the Senators. ... The Canadiens were without C Olivier Fortier (shoulder surgery, LW Andrei Kostitsyn (knee, early March), D Paul Mara (upper body, day-to-day), D Jaroslav Spacek (flu, day-to-day). ... RW Matt D'Agostini was a healthy scratch for Montreal.

Senators celebrate in front of Halak (Photo: Phillip MacCallum/Getty Images)

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(Photo: Phillip MacCallum/Getty Images)
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