Twice is nice for Heatley

CHRIS STEVENSON, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 7:48 AM ET

BOSTON -- You could see this one coming.

The Senators?

For sure.

Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas, too.

Only thing is, he couldn't do anything about it.

From the moment Senators winger Dany Heatley gathered in a rolling puck in the neutral zone, you knew he was going to shoot.

Seconds later, he did and Heatley had his 50th goal of the season, putting the Senators on the road to a 6-3 win over the Bruins and keeping the Senators at home to start the playoffs.

The win gave the Senators home-ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs which will start at Scotiabank Place Wednesday at 7 p.m. against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

The Senators end the season with 48-25-9 record, good for 105 points, their fourth-best total in their 14 seasons and allowing them to beat out the Penguins for fourth place in the Eastern Conference.

Heatley's blast from 34 feet ticked off a Bruins defender and beat Thomas to the stick side at 5:15 of the second period, making him the first player to have back-to-back 50-goal seasons since Pavel Bure did it for the Florida Panthers in 1999-2000 and 2000-2001.

"Spezz was bugging me, asking me if I saw him over there. I had a lot of room to shoot it and I just let it go," said Heatley.

"I got a lot on it and it hit (Aaron) Ward and changed direction a bit, but I'll take it. It's nice for sure and this team has a lot to do with it. It's a nice way to end the season and get ready for the playoffs."

Heatley also had two assists. Jason Spezza notched a pair of goals and captain Daniel Alfredsson had a goal and two assists as that line finished the season strongly.

"Everybody is happy for him and it was a huge goal at the time," said Senators coach Bryan Murray. "It was a Dany Heatley type of goal. The guys had been trying to get it for him and after that they settled down and played after that."

Things had gotten off to a rocky start for the Senators last night as Boston's Marco Sturm scored on the Bruins' first shot of the game at 1:28 as he was alone behind Chris Ottawa defenceman Phillips to poke home a feed from Patrice Bergeron.

But Thomas gave that one back when he came out of the net to clear a puck and put it on the stick of Senators winger Peter Schaefer, who fed Mike Comrie for an empty-net backhander and his 20th goal of the season at 3:25.

The Bruins took at 2-1 lead at 5:57 when Petr Kalus jumped on a big rebound by Senators goaltender Ray Emery, but Spezza tied it for the Senators at 6:50 when he tipped a shot by Alfredsson.

Heatley gave the Senators the lead with his goal before Spezza got his second of the night at 8:52 of the second, tipping a shot by Christoph Schubert this time.

Schubert was back on the blue line after defenceman Tom Preissing missed last night's game with a groin injury that's not expected to cause him to miss Game 1 of the playoffs.

With Schubert shifting back, forward Patrick Eaves went into the lineup after missing the last four games with a sore groin, injured when he was hit by a puck. He scored Ottawa's sixth goal on a dandy backhander from his knees to the top corner.

The Bruins had made it interesting early in the third when Petr Tenkrat scored with Senators defenceman Anton Volchenkov in the penalty box at 3:42. Tenkrat had the open side on a backdoor feed from Bergeron.

But Alfredsson got that one back on a 5-on-3 advantage at 6:18, wiring a shot over Thomas' shoulder to restore the two-goal lead. It was Alfredsson's 29th goal of the season.

Ray Emery picked up his 33rd win of the season after being given the option of having the night off by Senators coach Bryan Murray.

The Senators will have today off and begin preparations tomorrow to face the Penguins in playoffs.


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