OTTAWA, ON - APRIL 18: Alexei Ponikarovsky #23 of the Pittsburgh Penguins is congratulated by teammates Sergei Gonchar #55 and Pascal Dupuis #9 after scoring against the Ottawa Senators in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Quaterfinals during the 2010 Stanley Cup Finals at Scotiabank Place on April 18, 2010 in Ottawa, Canada. (Photo by Phillip MacCallum/Getty Images)

Penguins Skate Past Senators For Comfortable 4-2 Win, Claim Series Lead

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Penguins 4, Senators 2: Crosby Tallies Goal, Pittsburgh Takes 2-1 Series Lead

Ottawa, ON (Sports Network) - Sidney Crosby continued his strong start to the playoffs, posting a goal and an assist to lead Pittsburgh to a 4-2 victory over Ottawa in Game 3 of their Eastern Conference quarterfinal series.

Crosby now has seven points in the series for the Penguins, who have won the last two games to grab a two games to one series lead. Bill Guerin also had a goal and an assist, while Alexei Ponikarovsky and Evgeni Malkin each tallied once in the victory.

Marc-Andre Fleury made 20 saves for his 33rd career playoff victory.

Mike Fisher and Matt Cullen scored for the Senators, who yielded home-ice advantage after stealing the first game last Wednesday. Brian Elliott was beaten four times on 24 shots in defeat.

Game 4 of this series is slated for Tuesday at Scotiabank Place.

Pittsburgh struck first, taking the lead just 1:17 into the contest on Ponikarovsky's tally. Ponikarovsky held the puck in the right circle looking for a pass lane, but nobody contested him and the winger fired a wrister past the screened Elliott for a 1-0 advantage.

Ottawa nearly tied it late in the opening frame, but Peter Regin kicked the puck into the net from in close. He tried to get a stick on it, but the disc trickled underneath Fleury before he could tap it in.

The Senators equalized the score early in the second, as Fisher took a pass from Regin out in front and one-timed it past Fleury at 1:53 for a power-play tally.

The defending champions took over from there, though. Malkin skated in the neutral zone and pushed the puck past two defenders for Maxime Talbot, who fired a shot from in tight on the right side. Elliott was there for the save, but the rebound trickled out to Malkin, who fired it into the wide-open net at 5:57.

With under a minute to play in the second and Pittsburgh skating on the power play, Crosby used a nifty move amidst three defensemen, drifting through the slot while waiting for Elliott to go down low before lifting the puck over the netminder for a 3-1 cushion with 44.8 ticks left on the clock.

Guerin gave the Penguins a commanding 4-1 lead with a breakaway goal 4:27 into the third. He deked on the forehand before sliding the puck under Elliott's glove.

Cullen's power-play marker with 7:02 left drew the Senators within 4-2, but the Senators were unable to score despite having a power play and an extra skater in the final two minutes.

Pittsburgh defenseman Jordan Leopold (head) sat out...This was the first game of the series not decided by one goal...Ottawa is 12-8 in Game 3s all- time...Malkin has three goals in this series.

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