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Ovechkin helps Capitals edge Flyers

PHILADELPHIA (Ticker) -- Alex Ovechkin stood alone on the ice in

front of the Philadelphia Flyers' net waiting for the puck.

Great positioning for the reigning Hart Trophy winner, big

mistake for Philadelphia.

A quick Flyers' turnover behind the net led to one more goal for

Ovechkin and another road win for the Capitals. He scored his

NHL-leading 48th goal, added an assist and helped the Washington

Capitals beat the Flyers, 2-1, on Thursday night.

Flyers goalie Martin Biron never saw Ovechkin's 10th game-winner

of the season.

"Ovechkin's the last guy you want alone in front of your

goalie," Philadelphia coach John Stevens said.

Is he ever.

Ovechkin was held in check by the Flyers in their first three

meetings this season, with only one goal and three assists

against the team that eliminated Washington from last year's

playoffs.

He had an assist in the first period, then scored the go-ahead

goal in the second to lift the Capitals to their fifth straight

road victory. Washington hadn't won five straight on the road

since February 14-March 6, 2001 - when Ovechkin was 16.

"On the road, we're not trying to impress anybody. We're just

trying to win," Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau said. "At home

sometimes you get too cute and try to make the great play.

Whatever the situation is, I'd like to continue this formula."

The Flyers appeared to have tie it game midway though the third

when defenseman Kimmo Timonen's slap shot sailed past goalie

Jose Theodore, but the goal was waved off by officials when Mike

Knuble was whistled for interference.

Theodore was stout from there and finished with 35 saves. The

goaltender said a simple shift in the game plan has the Capitals

building on their road successes.

"We were trying too hard to score goals and now we're focusing

on our defensive game and it's paying off," he said.

Theodore was primed to face Simon Gagne on a breakaway, but

defenseman Mike Green caught him from behind and pried the puck

loose. The fans howled in protest, hoping for a penalty that was

never called.

"He slowed me down just enough to give them time to get me,"

Gagne said.

The Flyers had Daniel Briere back in the lineup after a two-game

absence because of lingering groin injuries, but their two-game

winning streak was snapped.

Biron took the loss, but made 28 saves and continued to solidify

himself as Philadelphia's No. 1 goalie down the stretch and into

the playoffs. He followed 27- and 31-save efforts in

back-to-back wins with another good effort that included 11

saves in the second period.

He just couldn't stop Ovechkin.

"They made some big hits against us, but we knew it was going to

be a hard game," Ovechkin said. "It's going to be a physical

game and we were ready for it. We didn't want to try to play

like them."

That was a good idea in the second.

Ovechkin's goal was as much the fault of Flyers mistakes than

anything Biron did. Darroll Powe appeared to try to clear the

puck out from behind the net, when it was picked off by

Alexander Semin. Semin made a quick pass in front to Ovechkin,

who buried the wrister high past Biron for the 2-1 lead.

"He's not going to put it in my belly, he's going to put it

under the bar and that's what he did," Biron said.

Ovechkin had an assist on Brooks Laich's 17th goal in the first

period. Laich redirected Ovechkin's shot from the circle past

Biron for a 1-0 lead with 4:03 left.

The Flyers tied it midway through the second on a nicely

executed 2-on-1. Captain Mike Richards faked a slapper, and

directed a perfect cross-ice pass to a streaking Knuble for his

24th goal.

That was all the Flyers could muster as they lost against

Washington in regulation for the first time this season.

"I thought we created an awful lot of good chances and could

have won the game," Stevens said.

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