Jets’ Al Montoya tallies 33 saves to shut out Senators
Ottawa, ON, Canada (4E Sports) – Goaltender Al Montoya recorded his third career shutout and Alexei Ponikarovsky scored the game’s lone goal as the Winnipeg Jets defeated the Ottawa Senators, 1-0, Saturday at Scotiabank Place.
Starting for the second time this season in place of an ailing Ondrej Pavelec, who was out with flu, Montoya tallied 33 saves for his first shutout since 2010-2011 season when he was still playing for the New York Islanders.
Montoya’s second victory this season helped the Jets snap a three-game road losing streak and improve to 5-5-1.
“We decided that we were going to play the right way from start to finish and play a full 60 minutes,” said Jets coach Claude Noel after the game.
“We understood the value of having patience and playing the right way tonight and were able to close it out,” he added.
Ponikarovsky scored with 5:57 into the third period, recovering a miss by Kyle Wellwood and hitting it past Senators’ backup netminder Ben Bishop, giving the Jets a 1-0 lead which turned out to be the final score of the game.
Bishop turned away 36 shots in his second start of the season but the Senators’ offense failed to pierce Montoya’s stone-wall defense as they dropped to 6-4-2.
The Senators almost took the lead halfway through the first period when Stephane Da Costa charged up the ice on a breakaway but Montoya was there to block it.
The Jets also had a scoring opportunity midway through the second but Wellwood’s attempt was blocked by Marc Methot.
Ottawa had another chance late in the second period when Evander Kane turned the puck over in the Jets’ zone to Daniel Alfredsson but his attempt was saved by Montoya.
The Jets finally put one on the board at the 5:57 mark of the after the Senators turned over the puck at the blueline.
Wellwood quickly took control of the puck at the top of the circle, and snapped a hard shot on net. Luckily, Ponikarovsky was there to redirect the puck past Bishop to make it 1-0.