Whalers 9, Penguins 5
PITTSBURGH (AP) _ Scott Young and Ray Ferraro each scored twice as the Hartford Whalers beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 9-5 Thursday night despite a four-goal game by Mario Lemieux.
Lemieux’s third goal was shorthanded, his 13th of the season, breaking Wayne Gretzky’s NHL record. Lemieux scored his fourth goal in the final minute to raise his league-leading total to 83.
Young scored his second on a power play at 8:26 of the third and John Anderson tipped in Ferraro’s pass at 9:59.
Brent Peterson and Ferraro scored between Lemieux’s goals in the third period.
Dave Tippett and Ferraro scored early in the second period to give the Whalers a 4-1 lead. Tippett got his 16th at 4:00 and Ferraro deflected a Dave Babych shot on a power play at 11:52.
Lemieux scored his second of the game at 14:54 of the second and Paul Coffey put in a rebound four minutes later on a power play to cut Hartford’s lead to 4-3. The goal was the 29th for the Penguins’ high-scoring defenseman.
Hartford restored the two-goal lead 29 seconds later when Jody Hull was able to knock in a pass despite being held by Coffey.
Ulf Samuelsson and Young sandwiched first-period goals around Lemieux’s score.
The Whalers succeeded on three of their six power play chances and rookie goalie Kay Whitmore won his second consecutive NHL start.
The Penguins remained in second place in the Patrick Division, one point ahead of the New York Rangers. Each team has two games to go in the regular season, including a showdown game Saturday night in Pittsburgh.
Hartford dominated the game, outshooting Pittsburgh 48-33 and consistently playing more physically than the Penguins.
″I thought we played very well defensively,″ Whalers coach Larry Pleau said. ″They scored some goals on the power play and Mario had a great individual effort, but we didn’t give them a lot of scoring chances at even strength.″
Whitmore had more success against Lemieux than many veteran goalies have. In the first period, Lemieux had a shorthanded breakaway, but Whitmore was able to slide to the side of the cage and block the shot with his legs.
″I talked to a few guys before the game and they said he likes to shoot high on the glove side,″ Whitmore said. ″I just stuck my pads out and I was fortunate he didn’t get the shot high enough. The second time, I didn’t know what to expect. You know he’s not going to do the same thing twice.
″I got him in the first period when it was still only 3-1 (Whalers leading) so I feel good about that.″
The Penguins are 2-7-0 in their last nine home games and missed a chance to move three points ahead of the New York Rangers in the battle for second place in the Patrick Division.
″There are no excuses,″ Pittsburgh coach Gene Ubriaco said. ″Hartford came ready to play and we didn’t.″