Senators top Maple Leafs in pre-season action

Greening finds winner on fluke play

Colin Greening had the winner in a win over Toronto. Photo: Ottawa Senators
Colin Greening had the winner in a win over Toronto. Photo: Ottawa Senators (greening)

TORONTO — Colin Greening had a goal and an assist and Robin Lehner made 26 saves as the Ottawa Senators edged the Toronto Maple Leafs 3-2 in pre-season action Tuesday at the Air Canada Centre.

The game-winner came at 8:43 of the third on fluke play.  

After Toronto (4-1-1) was unable to clear the puck, Mark Stone turned around from the blue line and fired the puck towards the net.

The puck hit a Leaf skate and found Greening who had an empty net for his first of the pre-season as Ottawa extended their lead to 3-1. 

Ottawa (3-1) broke the tie 6:48 into the final frame on a nice set up. 

Corey Cowick found Jim O’Brien who deflected the pass towards the Leaf goal and James Riemer (1-1) appeared to make the save, but the puck was able to trickle in. 

The Leafs were able to cut Ottawa’s lead to one just a minute and a half later.

Jeffrey Lupul carried the puck into Ottawa’s end on Lehner’s (2-0) right side and found a wide-open Dion Phaneuf, who one-timed it over the sprawling Senators’ goaltender.

Toronto opened the scoring 2:48 into the second. 

James Van Riemsdyk beat Lehner with a terrific move by quickly going from backhand to forehand from in tight and was able to flick the puck over the Senator’s goaltender to open the scoring. 

The Senators didn’t take long to respond.

Just under three minutes later centre Zack Smith came in on Reimer on a partial break and found a hole through Reimer’s pads to tie the game at one.

Greening and Mark Borowiecki picked assists on the play.

Ottawa nearly pulled ahead just under five minutes later.

De Costa found Andre Petersson but Reimer was able to come across to stone the 23-year old Swede.

Reimer was once again forced into making a nice glove save when Stone corralled the puck and looked to beat the goaltender on the short side. 

Toronto came close to taking the lead in the last minute of the second, but Lehner was able to make two spectacular glove saves.

He was first able to get a piece of the puck after a loose puck darted out to Carl Gunnarsson.

Then moments later Tyler Bozak found David Clarkson in the slot, but Lehner was up to the task and snatched the puck out of the air with his left hand.

Both teams threatened to open the scoring early. 

Cowick was able to sneak in alone on James Reimer after a defensive breakdown with the powerplay nearing but was stymied by Reimer’s left pad. 

A few minutes later Nazem Kadri came in on Lehner on a partial break  but the puck bounced over his stick before Kadri could get it to Lupul.  

Van Riemsdyk had a terrific opportunity to score his second goal of the preseason when he had the puck in the slot but fired it over Lehner’s glove side.

The Leafs continued to play sloppy defensively but Ottawa was unable to take advantage.

With under four minutes to play in the period Stephane Da Costa forced Reimer into making the best save of the period on a pretty set up by Greening.

Greening came in on Reimer’s right side and dished off to De Costa who deaked to Reimer’s left side but Reimer was able to outwait De Costa for a pad save.  

Moments later Kyle Turris was able to break free and come in alone on Reimer and beat the Leafs’ goaltender but the puck bounced off the post and deflected to Stone who forced Reimer into making a difficult save at the side of the Leafs goal.  

Ottawa outshot Toronto 37-28.