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Smith scores in SO, Bruins beat Lightning 4-3

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 8, 2014 at 10:23 pm •  Published: March 8, 2014
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TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — The Boston Bruins are making a charge to claim the Eastern Conference's top spot.

Reilly Smith scored the lone shootout goal in the seventh round to lead the Bruins past the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-3 on Saturday night.

Smith put an in-close shot between the pads of Ben Bishop. Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask caught a break on Tampa Bay's seventh shootout attempt when Richard Panik hit the post.

"Many times you get that gut feeling, and I said, 'You know what, this is probably a good chance for Smitty to get himself going,'" Boston coach Claude Julien said. "I even told one of my assistant coaches, 'It's going to end here.'"

Smith has not scored a regulation goal in his last 11 games.

"It was good to be able to help the team get an extra point on that," Smith said. "Personally, it may take a little bit off my shoulders, but hopefully I can get back to it next game."

The Bruins, winners of four straight, got regulation goals from Daniel Paille, Carl Soderberg and Johnny Boychuk. Boston trails East-leading Pittsburgh by a point.

Ondrej Palat, Mark Barberio and Valtteri Filppula scored for the Lightning, who are 1-4-1 since the end of the Olympic break.

"We, at least, got a point out of this one, so it's definitely a step," Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper said. "This is the best we've played since the break."

The Bruins outshot Tampa Bay, which had the game's first seven shots, 32-20.

Boston pulled even at 3 when Boychuk snapped a 20-game goal drought 8:11 into the third. The Bruins have outscored their opponents 78-43 during the third period this season.

Filppula put the Lightning ahead 3-2 from the slot at 9:31 of the second after the teams had each scored twice earlier in the period.

Palat ended Tampa Bay's long scoring drought against the Bruins on a short-handed goal to make it 1-0 just 27 seconds into the second. The Lightning went 169:55 without scoring after Filppula, in the first of four games between the teams this season on Oct. 3, had a goal midway through the second in that game.

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