Ottawa, ON (SportsNetwork.com) - Eric Brewer and Ryan Callahan each scored in the third period as the surging Tampa Bay Lightning held on for a 5-4 win over the spiraling Ottawa Senators at Canadian Tire Centre.
Callahan gave the Lightning a two-goal lead at 11:58, but had to sweat out the final 56 seconds in the penalty box after being called for slashing.
Ottawa had struck once with goalie Robin Lehner pulled for an extra attacker, but couldn't convert on the 6-on-4 advantage as its playoff hopes grew dimmer.
Teddy Purcell scored twice in the first period for the Lightning, who matched a season high with a fifth straight win. Birthday boy Valtteri Filppula supplied the other Tampa Bay goal, while Ben Bishop made 27 saves in his 100th NHL game.
Lehner surrendered five goals on 28 shots in the Senators' fifth consecutive loss.
"We turned over some pucks and put him in a tough spot," Ottawa head coach Paul MacLean said when asked for his thoughts about Lehner. "I think we put him in a tough spot. You give them 28 shots, you give them turnovers, 13 giveaways, you put the goalie in a tough position. It's too easy to say it's the goalie. It's way too easy. I think the whole group is in charge of all of that and we gave them too many pucks and gave them too many opportunities."
Brewer broke a 3-3 tie with his first goal of the season. Trailing the play, the defenseman collected a J.T. Brown pass in the slot and beat Lehner high on the short side with a backhander from the right circle at the 3:48 mark.
The Lightning went up 5-3 on Callahan's power-play goal. Callahan positioned himself in the slot and hammered Ondrej Palat's pass from the right-wing boards behind Lehner.
Ottawa got one back when Milan Michalek tipped Erik Karlsson's point shot with 2:52 remaining and Lehner on the bench, but could draw no closer.
"We keep getting goals from different players and we've buckled down on defense when we've needed to," said Lightning head coach Jon Cooper.
Tampa Bay scored 23 seconds into the game, as Purcell potted his first goal in 20 games.
Victor Hedman hustled back to thwart a 2-on-1 rush and quarterbacked an attack in transition. The defenseman dished the puck to Purcell after entering the Ottawa zone and Purcell beat Lehner with a one-timer from the right circle.
The Senators shook off the early goal and tied the game when Clarke MacArthur scored on a short-handed breakaway at 10:44 of the first period. Kyle Turris forced a turnover in the neutral zone and sprung MacArthur with a pass.
Ottawa killed the remaining time on the power play, but Purcell put home a rebound from in front shortly after the penalty expired.
The Senators pulled even again 29 seconds later behind their specials teams, with Karlsson scoring three seconds into a power play. Jason Spezza won a faceoff and Mike Hoffman fed Karlsson for a one-time blast from up high at 13:07.
Tampa Bay grabbed its third lead of the game on a power-play goal from Filppula. Filppula, who turned 30 on Thursday, skated through two players before sliding the puck over to Palat and continuing on to the net to poke in the rebound of Palat's shot at 5:43 of the second period.
For a third time, the Senators erased the deficit.
Ales Hemsky showed off his skills with a dazzling highlight-reel goal. The former Oiler handled a pass in the neutral zone, put the puck through his legs on the rush to get around Tampa Bay defenseman Radko Gudas and used a deke to the forehand to slip the puck behind Bishop with 2:28 left in the second.
Tampa Bay also won five straight from Dec. 15-23 ... Hedman, Palat, Tyler Johnson and Sami Salo each had two assists for the Lightning ... Tampa Bay snapped a five-game losing streak at Ottawa ... Filppula extended his point streak to seven games ... The Bolts acquired Bishop from Ottawa last April for forward Cory Conacher, who was placed on waivers by the Senators and claimed by Buffalo earlier this month ... Brewer had gone 94 games since scoring Feb. 24 of last season.