Sunday Sports - - SPORTS - — Don Bren­nan

Craig An­der­son was hav­ing a good sea­son un­til the past cou­ple of games. He’s now turned it up a notch.

The Se­na­tors’ No. 1 puck-stop­per fol­lowed his first shutout in nearly a cal­en­dar year with an even bet­ter per­for­mance against the San Jose Sharks on Sat­ur­day af­ter­noon. An­der­son kicked out 36 shots in the 6-2 vic­tory, in­clud­ing a sharp-an­gle ef­fort in the third pe­riod that was prob­a­bly Erik Karls­son’s best chance of the day.

An­der­son play­fully taunted his for­mer team­mate as he turned to skate back up-ice.

“I said: ‘Good try, Karl, I know that one,” An­der­son said later. “I’ve seen it be­fore.”

An­der­son stopped all eight shots he faced in the first, then al­lowed one goal in each of the sec­ond and third pe­ri­ods, while fac­ing 16 and 14 shots, re­spec­tively.

It wasn’t just the saves but the man­ner in which they were made. At times, the 37-year old An­der­son re­sem­bled Do­minik Hasek the way he threw him­self around on the ice.

“I was swim­ming,” An­der­son said with a laugh. “It was fun be­ing out there.” And the fans showed their ap­pre­ci­a­tion in the third. “The ‘Andy’ chant was great,” he said. “When you get those, you know you’re do­ing some­thing good.”

Asked if it was the first time he’d heard those chants this sea­son, An­der­son replied: “I don’t know. That was the first time I re­mem­ber, be­cause I don’t re­mem­ber what I did yes­ter­day.”

Im­pres­sive was An­der­son’s en­ergy level, es­pe­cially given the fact he has ap­peared in 24 of the Sens’ 27 games to date. Af­ter a sec­ond-pe­riod glove save he jumped to his feet, gen­er­ally an in­di­ca­tion a goalie is feel­ing good about him­self.

Fac­ing Karls­son, who he stopped on 9-of-9 tries, was also spe­cial. “It was ex­cit­ing to be out there with him,” said An­der­son. “The fans were en­gaged. They were cheer­ing for him. It was def­i­nitely emo­tional for even us. We played with him for so many years, it’s tough to see him in an­other sweater. “We just took it as an­other game, but that emo­tional level, that en­ergy level the fans brought be­cause he was here was great. We’ll thank him for it.”

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