Sports - Colorado Avalanche

Mar 2, 2014 11:34 PM by Greg Smith

Holden, D-men lead Avalanche past Lightning

DENVER -- Nick Holden's first two-goal game in the NHL led the Colorado Avalanche to a come-from-behind 6-3 win against the Tampa Bay Lightning at Pepsi Center on Sunday night.

The Avalanche got four goals from defensemen, including Holden's two, and scored four times in the third period to rally past the Lightning.

Defenseman Erik Johnson, in his first game after serving a two-game suspension, stole the puck from Ryan Malone and beat goalie Ben Bishop with a shot from near the right-wing boards to put the Avalanche in front 4-3 with 3:55 left in the third period.

Holden scored an empty-net goal with 53.1 seconds to play after the Avalanche killed off a tripping penalty to Jan Hejda, and Paul Stastny added an empty-net goal with 6.3 seconds to go.

The Avalanche were awarded four consecutive power plays, three in the third period, and scored on one of them to tie the game 3-3. Ryan O'Reilly slid the puck from the right circle through the slot to Holden, who moved near the left post and redirected the pass over Bishop's right pad at 5:12 of the third.

It was the Avalanche's sixth power-play goal in the past three games.

Center Nate Thompson scored twice in the second period to give the Lightning a 3-2 lead. He has eight goals in 60 games, five goals in the past seven games.

Thompson tied the game at 6:40 when he skated into the left circle and took a shot from the sharp angle that went under goalie Semyon Varlamov's right pad.

The Avalanche killed off a hooking penalty to Matt Duchene -- the first penalty of the game -- that began at 13:47, but Thompson scored again at 17:37. He took a shot from the left circle that Varlamov stopped with his pad, but Thompson continued to the net and chipped in the rebound.

Michael Kostka, who dressed as the Lightning's seventh defenseman, assisted on both of Thompson's goals.

The Lightning took their first penalty at 18:32 of the second when Vladislav Namestnikov interfered with Varlamov, but they killed it off.

Defenseman Tyson Barrie and O'Reilly scored goals 1:42 apart on consecutive shots late in the first period to give the Avalanche a 2-1 lead.

The Lightning's Tom Pyatt opened the scoring at 16:49. He skated into the lower end of the left circle and beat Varlamov to the short side for his second goal in 13 games this season.

Barrie collected his career-high eighth goal 30 seconds later. He maneuvered around Pyatt in the right circle, cut to the net and slipped the puck between Bishop's pads. Rookie Nathan MacKinnon had an assist on the play to stretch his point streak to 11 games.

O'Reilly broke the tie with 58.6 seconds left in the period. PA Parenteau slid a cross-ice pass to O'Reilly in the right circle for a shot that seemed to surprise Bishop. The goal was O'Reilly's team-leading and career-high 23rd.



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