Hurricanes topple Predators 5-2

Published on NewsOK Modified: December 5, 2013 at 10:54 pm •  Published: December 5, 2013
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Jeff Skinner is providing a big offensive boost for the Carolina Hurricanes.

Skinner got his first career hat trick to lead the Hurricanes to a 5-2 victory over the Nashville Predators on Thursday night.

He has five goals in his past two games.

Justin Faulk and Riley Nash also scored for Carolina, winners of its past two.

Mike Fisher and Viktor Stalberg scored for Nashville, which completed a four-game homestand 0-3-1.

Faulk scored the game's first goal just 23 seconds after the opening faceoff with a wrist shot from the right faceoff dot that beat Nashville goaltender Marek Mazanec between the pads.

"Any time you can establish good play or good momentum early in the game, let alone a goal, is always huge," Faulk said. "You don't go into the game expecting to score on your first shift or your first shot on net, but obviously when you do that it kind of gives your team a little bit of a boost."

Nashville tied it at 50 seconds of the second on Fisher's goal.

Defenseman Victor Bartley fired a slap shot toward the Carolina net from the left point. Standing just to the left of the slot, Fisher tipped the puck over the shoulder of Carolina goaltender Justin Peters.

Bartley's assist was his first point of the season.

"It's been a long time since I had a point so that was definitely nice to get," Bartley said. "Fisher did a great job getting on the net, and (Seth) Jones made a nice pass to me. We had some traffic and good things happened."

Less than two minutes later, Stalberg gave Nashville the lead at 2:41.

Coming down the right side on a 2-on-1 break with Nick Spaling, Stalberg's initial shot was turned aside by Peters, but he skated around the goal and swatted it into the net with a backhand for his third goal of the season.

Skinner evened the game at 2 at 6:11 of the second on a wrist shot from the right circle low to Mazanec's glove side.

Carolina regained the lead at 11:51 of the second.

Just out of the penalty box, Ron Hainsey intercepted a clearing attempt by Nashville's Roman Josi leading to a 3-on-1 break for the Hurricanes. Hainsey found Patrick Dwyer, who made a nice pass to Nash for his second of the season.



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