Calgary Flames down Washington Capitals

Calgary Flames Sven Baertschi is stopped by Michal Neuvirth of the Washington Capitals in Calgary,...

Calgary Flames Sven Baertschi is stopped by Michal Neuvirth of the Washington Capitals in Calgary, Alta. on Saturday October 26, 2013. (Al Charest/Calgary Sun/QMI Agency)

WES GILBERTSON, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 1:34 AM ET

CALGARY - It was red-light night at the Saddledome.

The Calgary Flames figured out a perfect way to mark the occasion.

With blinking red-light helmets handed out to thousands of fans, the Flames scored three times during an impressive opening period and managed to keep superstar Alex Ovechkin off the scoresheet en route to Saturday’s 5-2 home-ice victory over the Washington Capitals.

The Flames turned on the red light on their first shift of the night, with the trio of Michael Cammalleri, Joe Colborne and TJ Galiardi controlling the play in the Capitals zone and blueliner Kris Russell finding the back of the net with a wicked wrister just 1:04 after the national anthem.

Jiri Hudler doubled the lead about six minutes later from the blue paint, picking up Sean Monahan’s leftovers for his fifth goal of the campaign.

Just 48 seconds after Jason Chimera snuck behind the Flames defence and put the Capitals on the board with a nifty backhand, Cammalleri tipped Dennis Wideman’s past Braden Holtby, who was yanked after allowed three goals on 14 shots in just 12:50 of action.

Holtby, who made a couple of stellar stops and certainly wasn’t too blame for Washington’s early struggles, was also pulled in the first period of a 5-4 shootout victory over the Flames in Calgary’s season-opener. In fact, the 24-year-old goalie from the Saskatchewan side of Lloydminster has a .760 save percentage in two outings against the Flames this fall.

At the other end, Karri Ramo made 27 stops in his first start on Saddledome ice. His best work was a sprawling stop on a deflection by Ovechkin with about a dozen minutes remaining and his squad still clinging to a one-goal lead.

He also made a terrific pad save on the reigning Hart Trophy winner on a late powerplay.

It’s the first time in eight career games against the Flames that Ovechkin hasn’t managed at least a point, and the Russian wrecking ball had 10 points in his past four dates with the crew from Calgary.

While the Flames gave themselves a bit of breathing room with a stellar start, equally impressive was the way they finished in Saturday’s Hockey Night in Canada clash.

Capitals winger Aaron Volpatti banged in a rebound at the 7:45 mark of the second period to make it a one-goal game, but the hosts — despite being without the services of captain Mark Giordano and winger Lee Stempniak, arguably their most consistent performers so far this season — wouldn’t let them get any closer than that.

Cammalleri scored his second of the night from an awkward angle just after the midway mark of the third period for a valuable insurance marker and Curtis Glencross hammered a one-timer after a sweet setup from Matt Stajan with just over five minutes to put the game out of reach and snap Washington’s three-game winning streak.

With the victory, the Flames improved to 5-4-2 and now own a 3-0-1 record on home ice.

Bob Hartley’s bunch will host the fan-friendly Flames Fest — and unveil their new third jersey — Sunday at the Saddledome. Their next clash comes Wednesday, with the Toronto Maple Leafs making a visit to the Stampede City


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