Final

Series (Game 4 of 6)

New Jersey leads 5-1

Game 1: Friday, October 24th
Devils2Final
Penguins1
Game 2: Friday, November 21st
Penguins1Final
OT
Devils2
Game 3: Saturday, December 27th
Devils2Final
Penguins0
Game 4: Wednesday, January 7th
Penguins4Final
Devils2
Game 5: Tuesday, January 20th
Devils3Final
Penguins0
Game 6: Wednesday, March 17th
Penguins1Final
Devils6

Penguins 4

(10-23-3, 28 pts)

Devils 2

(20-9-1, 50 pts)

7:30 PM ET, January 7, 2004

IZOD Center, East Rutherford, New Jersey

1 2 3 T
PIT 2 1 14
NJ 0 1 12

R. Malone (Penguins - LW): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

J. Aubin (Penguins - G): Saves: 31, Save Pct.: .939

P. Elias (Devils - LW): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

Niedermeyer 'own-goal' helps Pens

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -- Scott Niedermayer and the New Jersey Devils gave the struggling Pittsburgh Penguins a gift.

Niedermayer scored a goal into his own net Wednesday night in the Devils' 4-2 loss to the Penguins.

Matt Bradley got credit for the goal with 17.9 seconds remaining in the first period as the Penguins built a 2-0 lead.

Niedermayer, under pressure from Bradley deep in the New Jersey zone, swept the puck toward Martin Brodeur. It hit the goalie's stick and glanced off the back of his leg before popping over the goal line. A video review confirmed that the goal had been scored.

"It wasn't a pass back to Marty," Niedermayer said. "I was trying to clear it hard behind the net. I gripped the stick a little too tight and I pulled into Marty."

Mike Eastwood, Ryan Malone and Eric Meloche also scored to help Pittsburgh to its first road victory since Nov. 14 in Buffalo. The Penguins also snapped a four-game losing streak.

Jean-Sebastien Aubin made 31 saves in the Penguins' third road win of the season.

Aubin came up strong in the third period, stopping 14 of 15 shots. He made a spectacular diving glove save on Eric Rasmussen with 33.6 seconds remaining to preserve the victory.

"I was just following the puck and I knew someone would be there," Aubin said. "I tried to cut off the pass but I missed it. I got to the other side as quickly as I could. He was there. I was there and I came up with it."

When the clock finally clicked down, the Penguins had a rare reason to celebrate.

"We needed any type of win," coach Eddie Olczyk said. "When you play as hard as you can against the defending Stanley Cup champions, it makes it that much better."

Niedermayer and Patrik Elias scored for New Jersey, which had won the last five meetings with Pittsburgh.

Eastwood opened the scoring at 10:38 of the first with a shot from the slot that floated over Brodeur's right shoulder and the Bradley goal put Pittsburgh up by two.

The teams exchanged power-play goals in the second period.

Malone scored at 7:58 to give Pittsburgh a 3-0 lead, and Niedermayer beat Aubin with 4:18 left.

Elias scored 2:39 into the third on a slapper from the top of the right circle. Meloche scored an empty-net goal with 20 seconds remaining to secure the win for Pittsburgh.

Game notes


Brodeur has started 37 of New Jersey's 39 games. ... Rasmussen returned for New Jersey after missing three games because of a separated right shoulder. He started game at center between Jeff Friesen and Sergei Brylin.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

SPONSORED HEADLINES

ESPNNewYork.com