03/20/2010 8:13 PM
BINGHAMTON, N.Y.– 24 hours after making history by becoming only the 10th AHL goaltender to score a goal, goaltender Chris Holt continued his hot play in net. Although he didn’t score, he stopped 30 of 31 shots to lead the Sens to victory in back-to-back games, as the Senators held off the Albany River Rats, 2-1.
Holt was tested early in the game. Just three minutes in, Albany found themselves shorthanded. But Albany winger Steven Goertzen intercepted a pass in the neutral zone and skated in all alone on a breakway. Goertzen faked the shot and went to the backhand, but Holt turned the shot aside with the pad to keep the scoreboard blank.
But for the second night in a row, Martin St. Pierre broke the scoreless tie midway through the first period. St. Pierre scooped up a loose puck just below his own blue line and turned on the jets, blowing by both Albany defensemen. St. Pierre fired a snapshot from inside the slot that found the back of the net to give the Sens the 1-0 lead.
With five minutes remaining in the period, the River Rats offense broke out on a 3-on-1 attack. Chris Terry brought the puck into the Sens zone and left a drop pass for Goertzen trailing behind him. Goertzen quickly slid a pass to center Nick Dodge, who had a wide open net by the far post. Dodge lasered a high wrist shot, but Holt flashed the leather and snagged the puck out of the air with his glove to preserve the one-goal lead.
Five minutes into the second period, the Senators went on the penalty kill. Deep in his own zone, defenseman Derek Smith cleared the puck down the ice. Goaltender Mike Morrison went behind the net to play the puck, stopped it, and tried to shoot it around the far boards. Morrison fanned on the clearing attempt, and was intercepted by Jonathan Cheechoo, who spun around and fired a shot that found the mesh inside the far post to put the Sens up by two.
The River Rats scored a strange goal of their own four minutes later. Bringing the puck down low, Oskar Osala cut in towards the net and chipped a backhand that hung in the air. The puck landed on top of the net, leaning off the crossbar and on onto Holt’s back. Looking for the puck, Holt moved, and the puck fell and bounced over the goal line. Many of the skaters did not know where the puck was, but referee Chris Brown was there to make the good-goal call.
In a mirrored situation as the night before, the Sens lead by one with under a minute remaining. The River Rats had pulled their goalie, and the crowd was getting antsy. But unlike last night, Holt never had the opportunity to go for a historic two-goal weekend for a goaltender. Instead, Holt was peppered with a 6-on-4 Albany offensive. But Holt kept the puck out of the net until the final buzzer as the Sens continued to ride their hot streak.
The Sens take on the River Rats in the second game of their home-and-home weekend, Sunday, March 21st, at the Times Union Center in Albany. Drop of the puck is 3:00 PM.
-Go B-Sens Go-