James van Riemsdyk powers Maple Leafs to win over Canadiens

Fitzgerald Cecilio – 4E Sports Reporter

Toronto, ON, Canada (4E Sports) – James van Riemsdyk netted the go-ahead goal with 5:33 left in the third period to lift the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 5-3 win over the Montreal Canadiens Saturday at Air Canada Centre.

Van Riemsdyk tipped a pass from Tyler Bozak past Canadiens goalie Carey Price for his 19th goal of the season as the Maple Leafs (25-20-5) clinched their fourth straight win.

Bernier made 30 saves Joffrey Lupul, Phil Kessel, Mason Raymond and Cody Franson scored while Nazem Kadri issued two assists for the Maple Leafs.

Brendan Gallagher, Brian Gionta and David Desharnais scored while Carey Price stopped 25 shots as the Canadiens dropped three of their last five games, dipping their record to 27-17-5.

Toronto took a 1-0 lead 4:49 into the first period with a highlight-reel goal from Franson. Nazem Kadri faked out Canadiens defenseman Alexei Emelin and centered a pass to Franson, who scored his third of the season.

Montreal’s Brendan Gallagher scored his 12th goal of the season on a rebound to tie the game 1-1 with 2:31 left in the first period.

Kessel then gave the Maple Leafs a 2-1 lead at 13:21 of the period when he took a pass from Raymond and put a snap shot past Price. The goal was Kessel’s 23rd of the season and his 300th point as a member of the Maple Leafs.

The Maple Leafs made it 3-1 with 2:13 left to play in the second period on the power play when Kadri found Raymond for his 13th goal of the season with a cross-zone pass and snap shot to beat Price.

Montreal cut Toronto’s lead to 3-2 with 11.2 seconds left in the second after Gionta recovered a Francis Bouillon’s miss and scored past Bernier for his eighth goal of the season.

Montreal’s David Desharnais tied the game 3-3 at 9:06 of the third with his eighth goal of the season. Desharnais tipped a shot from the blue line by P.K. Subban and sent the puck wobbling past goalie Jonathan Bernier.

After van Riemsdyk put the Leafs ahead, Lupul was awarded a goal when he was hauled down by Montreal forward Lars Eller while breaking away on the empty net with four seconds remaining. It was Lupul’s 15th goal of the season.

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