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Sens light up Pens

Daniel Alfredsson registered two goals and two assists, leading the Ottawa Senators to an 8-4 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins at Scotiabank Place.

Milan Michalek supplied a goal and two assists, and Nick Foligno earned three helpers for the Senators, who snapped a three-game losing streak but stayed three points behind first-place Boston in the Northeast Division after the Bruins also won on Saturday.

"We talked about how we need a total team effort for us to win games and that's what we got tonight," said Senators forward Jason Spezza.

Ottawa also is two points ahead of eighth-place Buffalo in the Eastern Conference standings.

Ben Bishop gave up three Pittsburgh goals on 20 shots before leaving in the second period with a lower-body injury. Craig Anderson made 19 saves in relief.

Matt Cooke scored twice for Pittsburgh, which suffered its first regulation loss since February 19. The Penguins had gone 13-0-1 prior to Saturday's setback.

Pittsburgh fell three points behind the New York Rangers for the top spot in the Atlantic Division and conference standings.

Penguins rookie Brad Thiessen was beaten eight times on 28 shots.

"Teams are going to be desperate from here on in so we have got to expect tough games and really make sure our game is where it needs to be heading into the playoffs," Penguins forward Sidney Crosby said.

The Senators opened the scoring 9:06 into the game, but a pair of goals by Cooke gave Pittsburgh the lead after the first period.

Forty seconds after Michalek slammed home a rebound into a wide-open cage, Cooke sent a wrister through the pads of Bishop from the right circle to tie it.

The gritty Cooke struck again off a nifty backhand feed by Crosby. The play started with Crosby gathering Paul Martin's pinpoint stretch pass at the Ottawa blue line. Crosby then moved down the right wing, spun around and threw the puck towards the crease, where it was directed behind Bishop by Cooke at 13:01.

Sergei Gonchar netted the equalizer for Ottawa, scoring from the slot 33 seconds into the second period off a pass from Foligno.

The Senators got goals from Chris Phillips and Kyle Turris 36 seconds apart to go up 4-2.

With Cooke in the penalty box for goalie interference, Phillips converted Turris' pass for a one-timer from the right circle. Turris then scored on a deflection at 7:41.

A turnover by Ottawa's Erik Karlsson led to a goal by Tyler Kennedy 14 seconds later.

The Penguins had an opportunity to pull even with consecutive power plays, but wound up digging a bigger hole for themselves by surrendering a short-handed goal to Alfredsson with 3:53 remaining.

Crosby's first goal since his return from head and neck injuries closed the gap to 5-4 at the 11:43 mark of the third period. But the Senators responded less than two minutes later when Spezza scored on a breakaway.

Alfredsson and Colin Greening added tallies 63 seconds apart late in the frame.

Game Notes

Thiessen made his fourth career NHL start and first on the road...Pittsburgh's Evgeni Malkin was a minus-4 and had his point streak snapped at six games...Penguins forward Pascal Dupuis collected an assist to extend his point streak to nine games.