Final

Series (Game 1 of 1)

Pittsburgh leads 1-0

Game 1: Saturday, October 18th
Red Wings3Final
Penguins4

Red Wings 3

(3-1-0, 6 pts)

Penguins 4

(1-2-0, 3 pts)

7:30 PM ET, October 18, 2003

Mellon Arena, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

1 2 3 T
DET 2 1 03
PIT 1 1 24

R. Fata (Penguins - RW): Goals: 2, Assists: 1

R. Malone (Penguins - LW): Goals: 0, Assists: 2

M. Fleury (Penguins - G): Saves: 31, Save Pct.: .912

Pens rally from two-goal deficit

PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Rico Fata had time only to make sure he preserved his scoring chance -- and coach Ed Olczyk's first NHL win.

Fata found open ice late in third period, took a long cross-ice pass from Ryan Malone and wristed it past Dominik Hasek to give the Pittsburgh Penguins a 4-3 win over the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday night.

"The main thing I wanted to do was make sure I held onto the pass, because Ryan made a great play. Hasek gave me a little of the glove side, and that's what I took," Fata said.

It was a night of firsts for the young Penguins, who rallied from a two-goal deficit. Fata had two goals and three points in a game for the first time, including his first short-handed goal, and rookie goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury made 31 saves for his first NHL victory.

"I thought he made some outstanding saves," Detroit coach Dave Lewis said of Fleury, who stopped the Red Wings' final 20 shots in his second NHL start to hand Detroit its first loss of the season.

The Red Wings built a 3-1 lead midway through the game on goals by Henrik Zetterberg, Tomas Holmstrom and Darren McCarty. They had an apparent go-ahead goal disallowed at 3:06 of the third period. With the game tied at 3, video goal judge Dale Ruth ruled Mathieu Schneider kicked the puck into the net.

"There is no way I kicked that puck in," said Schneider, who had two assists.

Detroit gave Pittsburgh eight power plays, including seven in the opening 24 minutes. The Penguins converted just one, a goal by Ramzi Abid 5:34 into the game.

"Somehow we got out of the first period (with a lead), which is a credit to our penalty killers," Lewis said. "But you just can't do that. It takes the rhythm out of the game for your forwards and defensemen. And we have to do a better job collectively of holding a lead."

Detroit, which lost just three games last season when leading after two periods, took a 3-2 lead into the final period. But Martin Straka's goal off a pass from Konstantin Koltsov 11 seconds into the third period tied the game.

"We got a little bit of confidence when we got that goal to tie it up, and we just kept it up the whole third period," said Fata, who beat Nicklas Lidstrom to a loose puck in the Detroit crease for a short-handed goal at 12:35 of the second period to make it 3-2.

The Red Wings outshot the Penguins 26-11 over the final two periods but could not get another puck past Fleury, who made 46 saves in a 3-0 loss to Los Angeles Oct. 10.

"It feels great to win one for the team," Fleury said. "That's like playing against an All-Star team."

Game notes


Hull returned to the Detroit lineup after missing Thursday's game against Vancouver with a sore back. Woolley made his season debut, replacing the injured Derian Hatcher. ... The Penguins dressed Milan Kraft for the first time this season. ... Pittsburgh (12-16-5) is one of five teams against which Hasek has a losing record. The others are Detroit, Phoenix, Dallas and Philadelphia. ... Lemieux has scored on just one of his last 33 regular-season shots against Hasek. ... The Penguins distributed photo cards of Fleury to all fans. ... Pittsburgh won just one of its previous 12 home games.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

SPONSORED HEADLINES