Jake Voracek, a recent healthy scratch for his lack of production, scored an unassisted goal off a quirky bounce off the back boards in the overtime to give the Columbus Blue Jackets a 4-3 victory over the Ottawa Senators on Friday night.
The puck took a big ricochet and Ottawa's Alex Kovalev and Chris Campoli were unable to corral it. Voracek swooped in and forced the puck between goalie Brian Elliott's leg pads 2:06 into the overtime.
Voracek also had an assist.
The victory was the third in a row for Columbus, coming one night after a 3-2 win in Toronto that ended a seven-game winless skid on the road. The Blue Jackets have won five of their last seven at home.
It was a bitter defeat for the Senators, who dominated play for most of the last two periods but continue to be undone by a lack of offense. They are in 27th in the NHL with 89 goals.
Alfredsson forced overtime with the Blue Jackets hanging on to a 3-2 lead. Kovalev, who had earlier clanged a shot off the post, flipped a shot on goal from the wall in front of the Columbus bench. Mason blocked it, but Milan Michalek was able to get off a shot that Mason again stopped. Alfredsson then converted the third try in the flurry for his 12th.
In 10 of their last 11 games, the Blue Jackets had given up the first goal. But Umberger made sure that didn't happen this time. He took a nice setup on a 3-on-2 break and drilled a one-timer from the right circle, just inside the near post for his 12th.
The Blue Jackets are 14-2-0 when scoring first and just 6-13-3 when surrendering the first goal.
At 12:13 of the second period, the Senators provided a gift goal.
Chris Phillips collected the puck behind his own goal cage but then lost control of it as he skated up the ice. Columbus' Chris Clark was able to poke it away from Phillips, with Pahlsson lifting a shot into the top of the net.
Moments later the Blue Jackets made it 3-0 when Vermette's pass from in front of the Ottawa bench triggered a rush. Kristian Huselius carried it down the right wing and was able to muscle a lead pass to Nash for a jam shot. It was his 18th goal of the season and extended his points streak to three games while ending an eight-game goal drought.
The Senators buzzed the net for the final few minutes of the period, finally breaking through when Mason gave up a rebound that ended up on Fisher's stick after Columbus tried to clear it. His hard shot from the high slot beat Mason with 63 seconds left in the period.
Ottawa then narrowed the deficit to a goal just 1:18 into the third period when Jesse Winchester's 2-on-1 pass from the right wing set up Foligno for his fifth of the year.
The Senators kept the puck in their offensive zone for long segments of the third period while applying pressure.
They nearly tied it when Kovalev's wrister from the left dot with just over 8 minutes left rang off the far post.
NOTES: Columbus D Jan Hejda played his 300th NHL game. ... The Senators have scored more than three goals only once in their last 24 starts. ... The Blue Jackets improved to 2-5-0 in their third jersey. ... Columbus came in with the worst home power play in the NHL and was 0 for 4. ... Vermette picked up his 100th point in his 136th career game with Columbus.
Source: AP News