SUN Hockey Pool

Flames fail to hold lead

Kyle Chipchura (right) is bloodied by Eric Nystrom during first period action in Anaheim on Sunday....

Kyle Chipchura (right) is bloodied by Eric Nystrom during first period action in Anaheim on Sunday. (QMI Agency/Ric Tapia)

STEVE MACFARLANE, QMI AGENCY

, Last Updated: 9:47 AM ET

ANAHEIM — So much for the scoring slump.

Too bad four goals wasn't enough to earn them a victory.

Losing their fourth straight game, the Calgary Flames saw their slide at The Pond stretch to 11 consecutive defeats at the hands of the Anaheim Ducks last night with a 5-4 decision falling in favour of the home side.

As impressive as it was to see Olli Jokinen, Mark Giordano and Curtis Glencross all score on breakaway attempts as the Flames managed to take a 4-3 lead into the third period, the Flames took a step backward in the department of defence and allowed Corey Perry and Bobby Ryan to score in the final frame.

Things looked bleak early on, too, but the Flames overcame a 3-1 deficit with a rally starting late in the first period when Jamie Lundmark one-timed a perfect pass from Jay Bouwmeester past Jonas Hiller.

Giordano and Glencross gave the Flames a lead as they continued to find holes.

The way things have been going for the Flames lately, fans at home were probably pulling out their hair late in the first period when the Ducks owned a 3-1 lead.

Among the many questions in their minds was, "Who are these guys?"

Yes, marquee players like Dan Sexton, Evgeni Artyukhin and Troy Bodie staked the Ducks to a two-goal lead with less than three minutes remaining in the opening frame.

Sexton's eighth of the year tied things up as he took advantage of a four-on-three powerplay and one-timed Ryan Getzlaf's pass through Flames goalie Curtis McElhinney.

At least Sexton has business scoring as a legitimate second-liner.

Artyukhin's softie under McElhinney's glove arm, after the beefy winger easily raced around Cory Sarich to get the shot off, was just his third of the season.

Bodie potted the first of his career in fluky fashion less than a minute later when McElhinney kicked Kyle Chipchura's shot a couple of feet right into the charging winger.

A review confirmed the goal wasn't intentionally kicked in, and the Flames were facing the challenge of scoring at least four goals to take the lead.

They'd only achieved that high a total once in the previous 22 games.

But the Ducks stars chipped in late, and the Flames' offensive well had already run dry on the night.

steve.macfarlane@sunmedia.ca


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