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Capitals vs. Senators Recap: Rookie Rearguards Lift Washington to Win

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First career NHL goals from Tyler Lewington and Madison Bowey provide spark behind Capitals’ 3 to 2 win.

NHL: Washington Capitals at Ottawa Senators Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

The Capitals returned to Canada’s capital city for the second time in a week to square off against the Senators once again. Similar to last weekend Washington was able to control play throughout and skate away with the win, this time 3 to 2.

Here’s Saturday night’s Plus/Minus:

Plus: With Matt Niskanen held out of the lineup the Capitals needed their defense, especially the younger guys, to step up and perform well on the road. It was an assignment they had no problem handling.

Minus: Late in the third period Washington yielded Ottawa a goal to draw the home team within one. On the play Dmitry Orlov, Madison Bowey, and Evgeny Kuznetsov were all caught in the corner, allowing Mark Stone space to bury his shot.

Ten more notes on the game.

  1. Seven minutes into the contest Kuznetsov connected with Tom Wilson on a rush to put Washington ahead early. A hard pass from Kuznetsov across the slot allowed Wilson to put his stick on the puck and push it past Senators goaltender Marcus Hogberg.
  2. Tyler Lewington returned to Washington’s lineup for his second career game (both in Ottawa) and picked up a secondary assist on Wilson’s goal, his first career point. But he wasn’t finished yet.
  3. Before the first frame could conclude Lewington put the Capitals ahead by two with his first career goal. Lewington walked down the slot alone thanks to a slick Nicklas Backstrom drop pass and rifled a high and hard shot beyond Hogberg’s blocker.
  4. Not looking to be outdone by his new teammate Bowey stole the spotlight in the second. An excellent offensive zone entry from Wilson led to a great chance for Bowey from the slot that he buried. His shot was placed similarly to Lewington’s and gave Washington a commanding three goal lead.
  5. But four minutes later Colin White snuck a puck under Copley to put Ottawa on the scoreboard. With Brady Tkachuk crashing the crease hard Copley was unable to hold the puck against the post long enough for a whistle.
  6. Washington would challenge the Senators’ goal, citing goaltender interference, but Garrett Rank and Jon McIsaac upheld their call on the ice after a brief video review.
  7. Bowey dropped Tkachuk with a shoulder to the chin at center ice and the two settled their argument in a spirited dance. While Bowey was getting the original minor penalty for head contact Tkachuk was whistled for instigating the fight and a misconduct, adding ten minutes to his sentence.
  8. Lewington later dropped the gloves with Zack Smith to complete his Gordie Howe Hat Trick 35 minutes into the contest. The pair battled above Copley’s crease in an even match that ended with both upright and exhausted.
  9. With three and a half minutes remaining Stone found the puck on his stick in the slot all alone. Stone ripped a shot past Copley to bring Canadian Tire Centre to life and draw the Senators to within one.
  10. That would be as close as Ottawa could come though. Copley would finish the night with 31 saves while registering his ninth win of the season.