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Carolina Hurricanes Lose Home Opener 4-1 to Tampa Bay Lightning

January 23rd, 2013 at 10:33 AM
By Chris Warner

The Carolina Hurricanes lost their home opener 4-1 to Southeast Division rival Tampa Bay Lightning Tuesday night at the PNC Arena in Raleigh; this loss comes after the team was defeated 5-1 Saturday night in Sunrise, Florida at the hands of the Florida Panthers. Jeff Skinner tallied the only goal for the Hurricanes, while Jordan Staal and Alexander Semin notched their first points as Carolina Hurricanes by picking up the assists.

'Cam Ward' photo (c) 2011, Benjamin Reed - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

Tampa Bay got the scoring started early on a goal from Tom Pyatt a mere 5:18 into the first period, his first of the season, assisted by Vincent Lecavalier and Matt Carle. Cory Conacher put the Lightning ahead 2-0 with his goal 6:18 after the goal by Pyatt; the goal was Conacher's second of the young season and was assisted by Vincent Lecavalier and Teddy Purcell.

Although both teams fired eight shots on goal in the first period, Tampa Bay was up 2-0 after the period period of play.

The Carolina Hurricanes cut their deficit in half in the second period on a powerplay goal by forward Jeff Skinner at the 3:35 mark. Skinner picked up the rebound in front of the Tampa Bay net and lifted an impressive backhand shot, from his knees, over the glove hand of Tampa Bay's starting goaltender Martin Garon. The goal was Skinner's first of the season and was assisted by Jordan Staal and Alexander Semin. The Hurricanes finished the second period with 13 shots on goal, 21 total through two periods, while Tampa Bay fired 11 shots on goal for a two period total of 19.

The Carolina Hurricanes got the majority of the scoring chances in the third period, 15 third period shots compared to seven by the Lightning, by the Lightning scored two third period goals to secure the victory. Tampa's Keith Aulie beat Hurricanes' starting goaltender Cam Ward with a quick snap shot 1:37 into the third to give the Lightning a 3-1. The goal was Aulie's first of the season and was assisted by Brendan Mikkelson.

Forward Ryan Malone scored the final Lightning goal 9:57 into the third period when he beat Cam Ward with a wrist shot; the powerplay goal was Malone's first of the season and was assisted by Steven Stamkos and Sami Salo.

The Carolina Hurricanes take to the ice again Thursday Night, 7:00 e.t. at the PNC Arena in Raleigh against the Buffalo Sabres.    

Tags: alexander semin, Carolina, Carolina Hurricanes, Hockey, Jeff Skinner, Jordan Staal, NHL, Teddy Purcell, Vincent Lecavalier

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