Light­ning pulls even


The Washington Post Sunday - - SPORTS - BY GREG BEACHAM

Tampa Bay holds off Chicago to tie Stan­ley Cup fi­nals at a game apiece.

tampa — Two goalies tak­ing turns in the crease in the third pe­riod. A low-scor­ing de­fense-man get­ting the big­gest goal of all.

The Tampa Bay Light­ning found some strange ways to even the Stan­ley Cup fi­nals.

Ja­son Gar­ri­son scored the tiebreak­ing power-play goal with 11 min­utes 11 sec­onds to play, rookie goalie An­drei Vasilevskiy re­lieved Ben Bishop twice to earn the victory, and the Light­ning beat the Chicago Black­hawks, 4-3, in Game 2 on Satur­day night to even the se­ries.

Nikita Kucherov had a goal and anas­sist for the Light­ning, which played with all the ag­gres­sion it lacked in the third pe­riod of Game 1 when Chicago ral­lied late to win.

Tyler John­son and Cedric Pa­que­tte also scored for Tampa Bay, which cu­ri­ously made three goalie changes in the third pe­riod. The 20-year-old Vasilevskiy made five saves in 9:13 to earn his first NHL play­off win.

Game 3 is Mon­day night in Chicago.

Vasilevskiy has 16 regular sea­son games of NHL ex­pe­ri­ence, and he had played in just two games since March 31. But the Rus­sian came in for 92 sec­onds be­fore Gar­ri­son scored the go-ahead goal, and he re­turned to fin­ish the game with 7:41 to play, earn­ing the victory.

The Light­ning didn’t say why Bishop left the game, came back and left again. He com­plained of in­ter­fer­ence on Brent Seabrook’s ty­ing goal early in the third pe­riod, but played on.

An­drew Shaw and Teuvo Ter­a­vainen scored 2:16 apart early in the sec­ond pe­riod for the Black­hawks, who couldn’t fol­low up their Game 1 come­back with an­other.

Just over five min­utes af­ter Seabrook scored, Gar­ri­son put the Light­ning ahead when his shot de­flected off a Chicago player in front of Corey Craw­ford, who stopped 20 shots in an unin­spir­ing ef­fort. The goal was just Gar­ri­son’s sec­ond of the post­sea­son.

With his jar­ring No. 88 jer­sey and 45 pre­vi­ous min­utes of NHL play­off ex­pe­ri­ence, Vasilevskiy han­dled his sur­prise as­sign­ment splen­didly. He made an out­stand­ing pad save with less than five min­utes to play as Tampa Bay killed a penalty, and he stayed strong to wrap up the victory.

The Light­ning again showed off the re­silience that got it to this lofty height, im­prov­ing to 4-0 in Game 2 of its four post­sea­son se­ries af­ter go­ing 1-3 in Game 1. Tampa Bay has lost two straight only once in the en­tire play­offs.

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