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Staying alive!

Monday, 10.05.2010 / 10:50 PM / News
Associated Press
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Staying alive!

MONTREAL (AP) -Michael Cammalleri scored his second goal of the game midway through the second period and Jaroslav Spacek netted the go-ahead tally 2:30 later for the Montreal Canadiens, who forced a Game 7 in the Eastern Conference semifinals with a 4-3 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Monday night.

Maxim Lapierre also scored 11:03 into the third to give Montreal a 4-2 lead.

Bill Guerin deflected Sergei Gonchar's slap shot from the right point past Jaroslav Halak with 1:24 remaining to draw Pittsburgh within one. But the Canadiens held on to set up Game 7 in Pittsburgh on Wednesday.

Halak stopped 34 shots for the eighth-seeded Canadiens, who came back to beat Washington in the first round after falling into a 3-1 series hole against the Presidents' Trophy-winning Capitals.

Pittsburgh captain Sidney Crosby scored his first goal in seven games in the first period. Crosby earned an assist for his 19th point in 12 games when Kris Letang scored for a second game in a row early in the second.

That made it 2-1 for the Penguins, who had closed out five straight playoff series with a road win.

Cammalleri, who opened the scoring 1:13 in, drew the Canadiens even 10:45 into the middle period when he put a backhand past goalie Marc-Andre Fleury from the slot for his second of the game. He has 11 goals in 13 games.

Spacek, who returned to the lineup after missing nine games with a virus, drove a slap shot from the point past Fleury at 13:15 to touch off a thunderous ovation from the crowd.

Fleury made 21 saves.

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Game 7 could prove to be the final game at Mellon Arena, the Penguins' longtime home. The defending Stanley Cup champions, who haven't lost a playoff series since falling to Detroit in six games in the 2008 Stanley Cup finals, will move into the new Consol Energy Center next season.

Shutdown defenseman Hal Gill was unable to play for Montreal after he was forced to leave Saturday night's game. Gill, who skated in pregame warmups, was cut on the back of his left leg by former teammate Chris Kunitz's skate in the Canadiens' 2-1 loss in Pittsburgh in Game 5.

Cammalleri opened the scoring when he took Tomas Plekanec's return pass and fired a shot past Fleury from the right circle.

Crosby, who hadn't scored since extending his first-round streak to four games in Game 5 against Ottawa, tied it at 7:22 when he batted a puck out of the air past Halak.

Letang gave the Penguins a 2-1 lead on a power play 5:21 into the second when his shot from the slot trickled through Halak for his fifth goal.

NOTES: The Penguins lost to Montreal 2-1 in their first game at Mellon Arena - then named the Civic Center - on Oct. 11, 1967. ... Cammalleri's 11 goals are the most by a Canadiens player in the playoffs since Vincent Damphousse scored 11 in 20 games when Montreal last won the Stanley Cup in 1993. ... Canadiens D Andrei Markov missed his fifth game since hurting his right knee in the series opener

See also
Seventh Heaven
The Numbers Game - May 10, 2010
The general public invited to watch the decisive game in HD at the Bell Centre