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Tkachuk picks up hat trick as Senators squash Blue Jackets

Brady Tkachuk Ottawa Senators Brady Tkachuk - The Canadian Press

OTTAWA — Things are starting to take a positive turn for the Ottawa Senators.

Brady Tkachuk’s second hat trick of his career helped propel the Senators to a 6-3 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday night.

Two of Tkachuk’s goals came on the power play, while Claude Giroux got one short-handed to go along with two assists.

Ridly Greig and Erik Brannstrom also scored for the Senators (22-25-2), who saw their win streak improve to four games. Anton Forsberg made 36 saves for the win.

“We needed everybody to step up and I just hope we can build off of it,” Tkachuk said. “The last couple of games we’ve had a lot of looks but haven’t been able to bury it. Tonight was a stepping-stone and we just have to keep it going.”

Dmitri Voronkov, Boone Jenner and Jack Roslovic scored for the Blue Jackets (16-26-10), while Daniil Tarasov turned aside 24 of 29 shots.

After scoring four goals in each of the first two periods, the only goal of the third was an empty-netter by Brannstrom at 19:52.

“That’s a team that is coming together,” Blue Jackets coach Pascal Vincent said. “They changed their defensive structure, and the first seven or eight minutes we were managing the puck, making their D turn, they had five D tonight, and that was part of our plan, to make them skate.

"So, we did it right and it was successful. And then we changed. And that’s learning to play on the road.”

The Blue Jackets opened the scoring thanks to a double-bank shot by Kent Johnson, whose centring pass hit Voronkov in the skate then deflected off the skate of Senators' defenceman Jacob Bernard-Docker and past Forsberg and in.

Tkachuk then scored twice in a 48-second span, including one on the power play. His first came at 9:48 when Josh Norris fed him the puck at the side of a wide-open net. The second, at 10:36, was the result of Tkachuk scoring on his own rebound.

“We played a good first five, six minutes. Kind of played into their hands after that, giving them the puck,” Jenner said.

“We’ve just got to get behind them. We did that after, but we spotted them a couple goals there on our mistakes and it gave them momentum.”

The Senators then collected a short-handed goal as Giroux picked the top corner at 14:46 for a 3-1 lead. They appeared to go up 4-1 just 25 seconds later but after a coach’s challenge there was goaltender interference called.

In the second period each team scored twice as Greig and Tkachuk sandwiched their goals around the Jenner and Roslovic goals. Greig gave the Senators a 4-1 lead at 5:37 then the two Columbus goals came at 10:49 and 13:54. Tkachuk completed his hat trick at 16:48 on the power play and the Senators took a 5-3 lead into the third period.

"It was pretty cool. You always kind of dream about that when you’re a kid so for it to happen is pretty special. I was more happy with the outcome,” Tkachuk said.

The Senators were forced to play with just five defenceman due to injury. That didn’t seem to bother them.

“It’s not easy. A lot of guys know they’re going to get a lot of minutes but at the end of the day it’s next man up and the guys did a great job with that," said Senators defenceman Thomas Chabot.

“It’s nice to get a win. It wasn’t pretty and it wasn’t our best game, but we stuck with it and finished the night with two points.”


Tuesday marked the second of three meetings this season between the two clubs. The Blue Jackets were 4-2 winners in Columbus on Dec. 1. They will meet again in Columbus on March 14 … D Artem Zub and D Jake Sanderson were scratches for the Senators who played the game with just five defencemen. Scratches for the Blue Jackets were F Yegor Chinakhov, F Adam Fantilli and D Andrew Peeke … The Senators finished 2-for-5 on the power play while the Blue Jackets were 0-for-5.


Senators: Host the Anaheim Ducks on Thursday.

Blue Jackets: Visit the San Jose Sharks on Saturday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 13, 2024.