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Bruins' Thomas shuts out Senators

December 21, 2009

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OTTAWA—Tim Thomas made it a perfect 10 against the Senators.

Thomas stopped 29 shots to help Boston beat the Senators on Monday night. It was his fourth shutout of the season and his 10th straight win against the Senators.

"Oh, that's ten in a row? I had no idea," Thomas said. "I didn't know it was like that. I don't know -- you know, I like the nice crisp air when we come visit here. When you step outside the hotel I think this has the cleanest-smelling air around, I don't know if that has something to do with it."

Patrice Bergeron and Marco Sturm scored in the third period for the Bruins.

Thomas, who won the Vezina Trophy as the NHL's top goalie last season, improved his record this season to 8-8-5 with his 16th career shutout.

Bergeron put a rebound of Shawn Thornton's shot past Brian Elliott 3:19 into the third to break a scoreless tie. Sturm drove in alone and shot past Elliott at 13:07 to make it a two-goal lead.

"It was a good game for us," Bergeron said. "To get that goal finally in the third period was huge and then we kept the lead."

Boston snapped an 0-2-2 skid and moved past Ottawa into second place in the Northeast Division with 41 points, one ahead of the Senators.

The Bruins, shut out for the fourth time this season Saturday in a 2-0 loss in Toronto, have been held to nine goals in their past five games.

"I think both goalies played extremely well," said Bruins captain Zdeno Chara, who assisted on Sturm's goal. "It was a really tight game and we just stayed patient and eventually scored those goals."

Elliott made 27 saves in his 15th start in the past 16 games while No. 1 goalie Pascal Leclaire recovers from a broken jaw.

Mike Brodeur carried a shutout into the third period of Ottawa's 4-1 victory over Minnesota on Saturday, stopping 22 shots to record the win in his NHL debut.

The Senators have lost three of five and are 5-7-1 in their past 13 games.

Dennis Wideman returned to an injury-depleted Bruins' defense after missing two games because of an undisclosed injury. Derek Morris, whose injury is also unknown, was sidelined for a second straight game and Mark Stuart is out with a broken sternum.

Thornton took the puck off Ottawa's Josh Hennesy in the Senators' zone and took a long shot from the right side. Elliott kicked out a rebound, which Bergeron pounced on to fire home his ninth of the season and give the Bruins a 1-0 lead.

"That was a great forecheck from Shawn, he made that play in the middle to cut that pass and then a great shot," Bergeron said. "If you put the puck to the net and there are some guys there to get the rebounds something's going to happen, and I was lucky enough to be right there to get the rebound."

Sturm got behind Ottawa defenseman Alexandre Picard and drove the slot to score his 10th of the season.

NOTES: Bruins D Adam McQuaid played his second straight game after making his NHL debut Saturday. Andy Wozniewski was a healthy scratch. ... Boston has not lost five in a row since a six-game losing streak in December 2007. ... Senators C Mike Fisher confirmed his engagement to singer Carrie Underwood earlier in the day.

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