The Calgary Flames scored a pair of first-period power-play goals Saturday and held on to defeat the Vancouver Canucks 5-3 to tie a club record for consecutive home wins.
Kristian Huselius and Dion Phaneuf each tallied with the man advantage in the opening frame before Jarome Iginla and Matthew Lombardi extended the Flames’ lead to 4-1 with even-strength markers in the second.
“The first 40 minutes were good for us,” Iginla said. “We knew they played last night and we were trying to come out with some jump. We were able to stay on them and force them to take some penalties and that was huge momentum.”
After the Canucks made it interesting with goals by Jan Bulis and Kevin Bieksa in the third period, the Flames’ Alex Tanguay put the game out of reach with an empty-netter with 36 seconds left.
“It’s frustrating that we can come out and play a third period like we did but play the first two periods like we did as well,” said Vancouver centre Brendan Morrison.
“We knew these guys have been playing extremely well at home. For whatever reason, we weren’t moving our feet early on and because of that we were taking penalties.”
Vancouver starting goalie Roberto Luongo — who has appeared in 29 of his team’s 30 games — didn’t make it through the second period. Coach Alain Vigneault yanked him after the Lombardi goal, the Flames’ fourth on 24 shots.
Backup Dany Sabourin stopped all 13 attempts he faced in relief of Luongo.
Bieksa and Daniel Sedin each registered a goal and an assist for Vancouver (14-15-1), while Henrik Sedin had two assists.
Iginla had a pair of assists to go along with his goal for Calgary (14-10-3), which equalled a team record with its ninth straight win at the Saddledome.
During the run, the Flames have outscored opponents by a whopping 32-9.
“We’re a real confident group here,” said Lombardi of the six weeks of perfection at the Saddledome. “It’s a confidence we have right now in everybody and we’re obviously lacking a little of that on the road. We have to take that same mentality there.”
The Flames will try for their 10th consecutive home win Tuesday against the Minnesota Wild.
After that, Calgary — 3-7-3 on the road this season — heads to Vancouver to begin a six-game trip.
CGY: Huselius (10) A: Kobasew, Regehr
VAN: Sedin (9) A: Bieksa, Sedin
CGY: Phaneuf (6) A: Hamrlik, Iginla
CGY: Iginla (16) A: Tanguay, Langkow
CGY: Lombardi (9) A: Ritchie, Huselius
VAN: Bulis (5) A: Sedin, Sedin
VAN: Bieksa (5) A: Morrison
CGY: Tanguay (6) A: Iginla