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Penguins rally in third period to defeat Bruins

PITTSBURGH (Ticker) -- Sergei Gonchar and Chris Kunitz scored 18

seconds apart early in the third period, Petr Sykora got the

game-winner later in the period and the Pittsburgh Penguins

gained a valuable victory in the Eastern Conference race,

beating Boston 6-4 on Sunday.

The Penguins rallied from deficits of 3-2 and 2-1 to beat the

conference-leading Bruins for only the second time in six games

and moved ahead of idle Montreal into fifth place in the crowded

standings. The Penguins picked up at least one point for the

10th consecutive game, going 8-0-2 during a run that began with

a seven-game winning streak.

Kunitz was originally credited with a power-play goal 43 seconds

into the third that tied it at 3, but Gonchar was given the goal

during a postgame review. Kunitz, who lost what would have been

his second career hat trick because of the scoring change, said

he never touched the puck.

He certainly did seconds later. Kunitz got loose on a short

breakaway off Bill Guerin's pass and beat Tim Thomas by shifting

from his forehand to his backhand before slipping the puck

between the goalie's pads. Kunitz's 21st goal was his fifth in

nine games since being dealt by Anaheim at the trading deadline,

although he didn't have a goal in his previous five games.

Michael Ryder tied it less than two minutes later with his 24th

for Boston, which was trying to become the first NHL team to

reach the 100-point mark this season. The Bruins had won two in

a row after dropping five of six.

Sykora put Pittsburgh back into the lead again with his 24th

midway through the period, only 13 seconds after Boston killed

off a power play that included 17 seconds with a two-man


Jordan Staal shed a defender with a spin move in the corner and

threw the puck to Sykora for a quick wrist shot from the left

circle. Sykora was playing his second game after missing three

games with an injured shoulder. Staal added an empty-net goal in

the final minute.

Phil Kessel scored his 31st goal and fourth in three games for

Boston, and former Penguins player Mark Recchi and Blake Wheeler

also scored for the Bruins. Wheeler's short-handed goal in the

second briefly put them up 3-2.

However, Wheeler's holding penalty 28 seconds into the third

created the power play that led to the first of two Kunitz's

goals in the opening 1:01 of the period.

Before that, Guerin scored 50 seconds into the game, his second

goal since being dealt to Pittsburgh. Recchi answered 16 seconds

later by beating Mathieu Garon with a one-timer from just inside

the blue line as the Bruins scored on their first shot for the

second day in a row. They scored on their first two shots during

a 2-1 victory over the Islanders on Saturday.

Garon made 21 saves in only his second start since being traded

to Pittsburgh on Jan. 17. Marc-Andre Fleury started the previous

19 games.

Sidney Crosby had three assists to reach the 90-point mark and

has at least one point in 10 consecutive games. He has four

goals and 17 assists in 13 games against Boston


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