Craig Anderson perfect in net as Senators shut out Leafs
Toronto Maple Leafs' Brooks Laich (23) looks for the loose puck as Ottawa Senators' Chris Wideman (45) and goalie Craig Anderson (41) look on during second period NHL hockey action in Ottawa on Saturday, March 12, 2016. (Fred Chartrand / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Lisa Wallace, The Canadian Press
Published Saturday, March 12, 2016 10:20PM EST
OTTAWA -- Craig Anderson made 29 saves for his fourth shutout of the year as the Ottawa Senators shut out the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-0 on Saturday.
Mika Zibanejad, Cody Ceci, Zack Smith and Mark Stone scored as the Senators (32-30-8) swept their season series with Toronto. Jean-Gabriel Pageau added three assists.
Garret Sparks, making his third straight start for the Leafs (22-34-11) stopped 13 shots. Coincidentally, Sparks used to work for Anderson at his goaltending school in Chicago.
Ottawa snapped a three-game losing streak and saved face after an ugly 6-2 loss to the Florida Panthers on Thursday night.
While this current edition of the Maple Leafs -- filled with minor league callups, most of whom are NHL rookies -- can hardly compare to the Panthers, the Senators knew things would get ugly if they put up another sub-par performance.
Despite the number of new faces on the young Toronto roster, a good portion of the 18,557 on hand at Canadian Tire Centre were cheering for the Maple Leafs.
Ottawa opened the scoring and dominated for the better part of the game.
Leading 2-0 to start the third, Smith scored his 21st of the season as he picked up a loose puck out front and roofed it. Smith has six goals and three assists in his past eight games.
Stone made it 4-0 at 15:21 as he initiated the play with a steal at centre and then took a great feed from Pageau for an easy goal.
Ceci gave the Senators a 2-0 lead 19 seconds into the second working the give-and-go with Mark Stone to beat Sparks off his backhand.
Stone now has two goals and four assists in his past five games.
Ottawa opened the scoring at the five-minute mark as Mike Hoffman fed Zibanejad a great pass who then faked a slapshot and beat Sparks through the legs.
Notes: LW Matt Puempel and D Patrick Wiercioch were a healthy scratch for the Senators. LW Milan Michalek and C Colin Greening made their first appearance in Ottawa since being traded to Toronto Feb. 9. Toronto's Rinat Valiev made his NHL debut.