Double blow to Sens' O

CHRIS STEVENSON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 11:07 AM ET

Could things go worse more quickly than they have for the Senators in 24 hours?

From beating the league-leading Red Wings Saturday, to losing two-thirds of their top line, to losing 3-1 to the Islanders last night.

That is a precipitous fall.

The Senators will have to regroup for tomorrow night's meeting with the Capitals in Washington, a team that has beaten Ottawa in their last two meetings by a combined score of 14-9.

Things went south fast for the Senators, who saw their four-game winning streak end last night.

The Senators could hardly enjoy the high of beating the Wings Saturday night after losing 50-goal man Dany Heatley early in the third with a shoulder injury.

After finding out he would be lost 4-6 weeks, the Senators found themselves without top centre Jason Spezza after 20 minutes of play last night.

HEAD DOWN

Spezza took a heavy hit when he was caught at the Ottawa blue line with his head down by Islanders defenceman Freddy Meyer IV.

Spezza looked dazed, but returned to finish the period.

He did not return for the second and it was announced he was being held out for precautionary reasons. "He just wasn't feeling right," said coach John Paddock.

Spezza's status is expected to be updated today.

"It was a hockey play. (Meyer) made a good play," said Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson, a beacon for the team again last night with the club's only goal, which tied the game 1-1 going into the third.

"Hopefully (Spezza) will be fine for the next game."

Marc-Andre Bergeron scored a pair of power-play goals, taking advantage of nine power plays for the Isles, and they got a single by former Senator Mike Comrie on a great end-to-end rush for the insurance marker.

The Senators were playing their third game in four nights and coming off that emotional win over the Wings, Paddock had concerns his club could be flat.

"It definitely seemed like it," said centre Mike Fisher. "The first period was not good at all. We had a little better second period, but we had a hard time staying out of the box. Some of us were not moving our feet. It's tough killing off 10 penalties."

Paddock blamed the refs.

"I thought there was an extreme amount of soft calls, period. I'm in shock at how this game was officiated."

Alfredsson, playing with energy and drive, relentless at both ends of the ice, set a standard to which his teammates could aspire.

He was a difference-maker again last night, scoring the goal that tied it on the power play with just under four minutes left in the second. Alfredsson got his stick on a puck fired at the net by defenceman Wade Redden.

Alfredsson then took a big run at hulking Islanders defenceman Andy Sutton and gave him a solid body check into the side boards.

In the third, he popped former Senator Mike Sillinger after he took a swipe at the glove of goaltender Martin Gerber.

"He played hard and gave us a spark," said Fisher of his captain. "Those are the kinds of guys we need, somebody to follow in a game we came out flat."

Paddock pointed to inconsistency among the Senators.

"I thought we had some real hard efforts from a lot of guys and three or four players who really weren't worth a hoot."


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