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The Globe and Mail

Tomas Plekanec’s first of season lifts Canadiens over Flyers 5-4

Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Michal Neuvirth and Shayne Gostisbehere react after being scored on by Montreal Canadiens' Phillip Danault, right, during third period NHL hockey action in Montreal, Saturday, November 5, 2016.


Tomas Plekanec scored the eventual winner while shorthanded in the third period as the Montreal Canadiens beat the Philadelphia Flyers 5-4 on Saturday night.

Andrei Markov, Greg Pateryn, Alex Galchenyuk and Phillip Danault also scored for Montreal (10-1-1) while Carey Price stopped 34-of-38 shots.

Chris VandeVelde, Shayne Gostisbehere, Claude Giroux and Travis Konecny scored for Philadelphia (6-6-1), which saw their three-game winning streak snapped. Michal Neuvirth made 12 saves in defeat.

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Plekanec scored the eventual winner at 10:57 while the Habs were playing down a man. Streaking down the wing, Plekanec beat Neuvirth five-hole for his first goal of the season.

Saturday's contest was the second game of a back-to-back for Montreal. The Habs were coming off a 10-0 drubbing at the hands of the Blue Jackets on Friday – the first time Montreal conceded 10 goals since Dec. 2, 1995.

Canadiens coach Michel Therrien played around with his lines on Saturday, most notably putting Artturi Lehkonen on the first line with Galchenyuk and Alexander Radulov.

But it was Montreal's defencemen who provided the offence to start the game.

Markov made it 1-0 just 1:06 into the game, jumping on a giveaway by Sean Couturier and firing home his first of the year. Neuvirth got his glove on Markov's slap shot, but not enough of it as the puck trickled in.

After VandeVelde and Gostisbehere got two goals in quick succession for the visitors, Pateryn made it 2-2 for Montreal at 9:09 of the first. The young defenceman just threw the puck on net, and a screened Neuvirth saw absolutely nothing until it was already too late.

Galchenyuk put the Canadiens ahead late in the second period, scoring at 18:38 on Montreal's third shot of the middle frame. The first-line centre, all alone at the side of Neuvirth's goal, took a cross-ice pass from Radulov through traffic and scored into a gaping net for his fourth goal of the season.

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Galchenyuk now has six points in his last five games.

After Danault made it 4-2, Giroux made things interesting in the third period, scoring on the power play. But Plekanec scored his short-handed goal on the same four-minute minor to Andrew Shaw.

Konecny got the Flyers back to within one goal at 16:16, but that's as close as the visitors would come.

Notes: Montreal is 9-0-0 when scoring first this year. The Canadiens remain perfect at home this season 7-0-0. The Habs are 6-0-0 at home against the Flyers in their last six games. This was the second of three meetings between Philadelphia and Montreal this season.

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