Sunday, March 11, 2007

Sunday Prognosis

Sunday, March 11th 2007

Through the first 40 minutes of yesterday's game on Long Island the Caps looked like a team that had completely lost their way. They were able to accumulate enough shots, but goaltender Rick DiPietro had the answer every time. (Photo Courtesy of Mike Stobe/Getty Images)

With each goal they gave up, you could see in their body language that they were spent. Tired of giving it their all and continuously coming up short. A 4-0 lead by the Islanders heading into the final period didn't give Washington much to look forward too, except for the fact that they only had another 20 minutes to endure before they could head out of town.

But then Alex Ovechkin provided the team with a spark. He made an explosive move around the right side and fired a shot on net. DiPietro made the first stop but the rebound was left in front and Ovechkin had broken the Capitals scoreless streak just five minutes before it would had tied the all-time record of futility. (Goal Pictured)

That goal seemed to change the attitude of the entire team. From that point on, the Capitals dominated the playoff-bound Islanders producing many quality scoring chances from players such as Alexander Semin, Ben Clymer, and Brian Pothier. Donald Brashear tallied the only other goal on the night and the Caps lost for the 7th straight time 5-2. But they showed in third period that even though their lineup is highly depleted, because of injuries and trades, they are still capable of playing at a high level.

If they can put together a full game at the level they played at in the third period, they should have a very good chance at pulling the upset tomorrow night in Atlanta.

Down on the Farm:

The South Carolina Stingrays won all three of their games this weekend, an impressive feat considering their thin lineup due to injuries and callups to Hershey. The wins moved them in front of the Charlotte Checkers and into the final playoff position in the South Division. They lead the Checkers by 2 points and trail the Augusta Lynx by just 2 points for fourth place. The Stingrays got a boost to their lineup as Cail MacLean was activated from the disabled list before Saturday night's win over Reading.

The Hershey Bears won Friday night in Manchester and Saturday night in Portland before falling to Bridgeport this afternoon. The wins get the Bears in pace with their divisional foes and they continue to trail the Norfolk Admirals by five points for first place in the East Division. While they continue to lead the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins by five points for the second place. Top performers this weekend were forwards Alexandre Giroux and Chris Bourque who both tallied 3 goals in the 3 games.

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