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Three assists for Ottawa star

10/26/2003

MONTREAL (AP) -- The Ottawa Senators are finding success with a balanced scoring attack.

Daniel Alfredsson had a goal and two assists and Marian Hossa had three points to help Ottawa extend its winning streak to four games with a 6-2 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday night.

Jason Spezza and Radek Bonk had a goal and an assist apiece for the Senators, who beat Montreal for the second time in just over two weeks.

"It's easier on the individuals when the scoring is spread throughout the team," Hossa said.

Vaclav Varada, Peter Schaefer and Martin Havlat also scored for the Senators, and Patrick Lalime made 23 saves.

Canadiens defenseman Sheldon Souray had his first career two-goal game.

"You want to contribute, but it's pretty empty when you lose," Souray said.

Montreal had not allowed more than one goal in a game while winning five of six since a season-opening 5-2 loss in Ottawa.

"They've got three or four pretty balanced lines; they've got a lot of skilled players; and they play a great system," Souray said. "They've been playing that system for a long time, and they're one of the best in the league at it. And when you make mistakes, they make you pay."

Jose Theodore, who had two shutouts and allowed just three goals in his last five games, stopped 25 of 31 shots.

Spezza assisted on Schaefer's goal to put Ottawa up 2-0 just 4:38 in, then scored three minutes into the third, moments after Souray's second goal.

Alfredsson, who got his second assist on Spezza's goal, scored his fifth on an unassisted goal at 6:11, extending the Senators' lead to three goals.

"You get the first goal and it really helps," Alfredsson said. "When they get the first goal, they're really tough, so I think that's why we've had success against them."

Hossa got his third assist as Bonk closed out the scoring with 3:37 remaining.

Montreal ended its season-high six-game homestand 4-2.

Varada opened the scoring 4:01 in when the puck went off his skate and under a sprawled Theodore as he drove to the net. A video review confirmed the goal.

Schaefer scored a spectacular goal for his first of the season just 37 seconds later. He moved the puck back and forth through defenseman Craig Rivet while driving the slot before putting a backhand past Theodore and giving the Senators a two-goal lead before the game was five minutes old.

Game notes
Canadiens captain Saku Koivu was out for the eighth straight game. Koivu originally was scheduled to return Thursday before removing himself from the lineup because his sprained right knee was still bothering him. ... Montreal, outscored 11-4 in its two games against Ottawa, has outscored the rest of its opponents 18-4.