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Penguins leave offense at home in overtime loss to Senators |

Penguins leave offense at home in overtime loss to Senators

| Saturday, December 8, 2018 9:57 p.m
Penguins defenseman Brian Dumoulin (8) looks back toward goalie Casey DeSmith, who blocks a Senators shot during the second period Saturday, Dec. 8, 2018, in Ottawa, Ontario.
Penguins defenseman Kris Letang and Senators left wing Ryan Dzingel vie for the puck during the second period Saturday, Dec. 8, 2018, in Ottawa, Ontario.
Senators defenseman Cody Ceci keeps his eyes on Penguins center Sidney Crosby, who skates with the puck alongside Jake Guentzel during the first period Saturday, Dec. 8, 2018, in Ottawa, Ontario.

OTTAWA — The avalanche of goals the Pittsburgh Penguins used to win their previous two home games didn’t make its way through customs.

Ryan Dzingel scored a power-play goal in overtime, leading the Ottawa Senators to a 2-1 victory Saturday night at Canadian Tire Centre.

The Senators went on the power play after the Penguins were called for too many men on the ice when Evgeni Malkin was overzealous coming off the bench to replace Jake Guentzel. Dzingel scored on a wrister from the bottom of the right faceoff circle.

The Penguins won their previous two games, scoring six in each victory. They have lost three straight overtime games and twice in three weeks in Ottawa.

Down 1-0 after a hard-luck first period, the Penguins got a couple of breaks in the first four minutes of the second. First, a call. Then, a goal.

The call came off the opening faceoff. Zack Smith collected a pass banked off the boards, skated up the left wing and scored on his own rebound to give the Senators what looked like a 2-0 edge.

Coach Mike Sullivan challenged, however, arguing Smith entered the zone before the airborne puck did. Referees agreed, and the score stayed 1-0.

About three minutes later, Jean-Sebastien Dea tied the score.

The 24-year-old forward picked up a pinballing puck in the neutral zone, beat defenseman Ben Harpur up the right wing and put the puck past goalie Craig Anderson’s short side at the 3-minute, 27-second mark.

Dea was playing his first NHL game with the Penguins since he was reclaimed on waivers from the New Jersey Devils on Nov. 29. He was in the lineup because Patric Hornqvist is day-to-day with an upper-body injury.

On paper, the Senators were operating at a pretty significant personnel disadvantage before the puck dropped Saturday night.

They lost two key forwards to injury in a 5-2 loss to Montreal on Thursday night. Matt Duchene, who came into Saturday night in the top 15 in the league in scoring with 34 points in 29 games, is expected to be out on a week-to-week basis with a groin injury. Bobby Ryan, meanwhile, is out with a concussion.

The Senators already were playing without center Jean-Gabriel Pageau, out long-term with an Achilles injury, so their top six looked awfully thin. On the list of accomplished scorers in the lineup, star winger Mark Stone didn’t have much company.

Stone did his part to put the Penguins in a 1-0 hole early.

About four minutes into the first period, after the Penguins had a hard time clearing a puck from the defensive zone, he set up Thomas Chabot for a shot from the blue line that sailed past an Olli Maatta screen and eluded goalie Casey DeSmith.

It was one of few good scoring chances for the Senators in the first period. The Penguins, on the other hand, had a multitude as they piled up a 16-7 advantage in shots and 26-7 edge in shot attempts.

The loaded-up top line of Jake Guentzel, Sidney Crosby and Phil Kessel contributed near-miss after near-miss. On one shift, a spinning backhand pass by Crosby set up Brian Dumoulin for a shot from the slot that went wide, and Anderson scrambled back to turn aside a Crosby rebound attempt.

The barrage of chances continued throughout the period. Crosby made another spinning pass to set up Jack Johnson in the slot. Derick Brassard made a bank pass off the boards to spring Bryan Rust up the right wing and a backhand pass to set up Zach Aston-Reese for a shot from the slot. Anderson was up to the task each time.

Jonathan Bombulie is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jonathan at or via Twitter @BombulieTrib.

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