SUN Hockey Pool

Oilers snake-bitten in Ottawa

Mike Fisher tries to stuff the puck past Oilers goalie Jeff Deslauriers during the second period...

Mike Fisher tries to stuff the puck past Oilers goalie Jeff Deslauriers during the second period last night in the nation’s capital. (Tony Caldwell/Sun Media)

DEREK VAN DIEST, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 9:48 AM ET

OTTAWA -- Perhaps outshooting opponents isn't the best way to go.

Last night the Edmonton Oilers played arguably their best road game of the season, yet came up short in a 4-3 shootout loss to the Ottawa Senators.

Jason Spezza scored the winner in the shootout as his effort hit the post then banked off goaltender Jeff Deslauriers into the net.

"Our overall game was pretty good," said Oilers head coach Pat Quinn. "I don't like the goals that went in on us. I had a problem with how the last one (third) went in for sure, because there was interference on our goaltender and it was offside as well.

"I guess you have to live with that stuff, but it makes it hard. But it was probably our best three periods in a long time and we might have, maybe should have, would have, could have had a better result, but we didn't."

The Oilers outshot the Senators 34-25 in the contest. It was only the second time this year the Oilers have been able to outshoot an opponent. They lost that game, too, the first one of the season, 4-3 to the Calgary Flames.

Regardless, the mood after last night's contest would have been even more unsettling had the Oilers not been able to secure at least a point thanks to Gilbert Brule's tying goal in the third period.

"We can take a lot of positives out of that game, we played really hard," said Oilers centre Sam Gagner. "We played solid, limited their shots and got a lot of shots of our own. It's obviously tough, but we have to be happy with the process in here, the way we played and hopefully we can bring it into Buffalo (tonight) and have a successful road trip."

Dustin Penner and Ethan Moreau scored the other two goals for the Oilers in regulation.

Penner opened the scoring in the first period, out-muscling Senators defenceman Brian Lee in front of the net and having a Steve Staios point shot bounce off him which eventually squirted underneath Senators goaltender Pascal Leclaire.

The goal was Penner's 11th on the season.

"The puck bounced off my stomach," smiled Penner. "I'm lucky I've dropped a couple of percent of body fat, otherwise it might have got just lodged there."

Penner was once again the Oilers most dangerous player on the night. He had a number of great chances to add to his team-leading goal tally.

In the third, he was robbed by Leclaire, who slid across his crease to get a pad on an effort at the side of the net off a cross-ice feed from Gagner.

In overtime, Penner had another great chance, beating Alexandre Picard in a race for a loose puck just inside the Senators zone. Penner went in alone and had his shot turned away by Leclaire who had come well out of his net to challenge the play.

"I worked hard to get there and I was able to block him (Picard) out," Penner said. "The one thing I have to learn is to have more patience. I could have faked the shot and gone around him. But my hindsight is better than my actual vision."

Jonathan Cheechoo, Nick Foligno and Chris Neil scored for the Senators who had to come from behind on a pair of occasions in the contest.

Cheechoo's goal was his first for the Senators and came on a giveaway by Lubomir Visnovsky deep in the Oilers end.

DEREK.VANDIEST@SUNMEDIA.CA


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