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Flames hold on for 3-2 win over Canucks

Dec 31, 2022; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Vancouver Canucks forward Bo Horvat (53) shoots the puck against goalie Jacob Markstrom (25) during the second period at Scotiabank Saddledome. Mandatory Credit: Candice Ward-USA TODAY Sports

MacKenzie Weegar scored his first goal of the season and added an assist to pace the host Calgary Flames to a 3-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks in their New Year’s Eve clash Saturday night.

Elias Lindholm and Blake Coleman also scored for the Flames, who scored all three goals in the second period and hung on for dear life after watching a three-goal lead turn into a one-goal game. Goaltender Jacob Markstrom made 22 saves.

Sheldon Dries and Elias Pettersson replied for the Canucks, who have lost two straight games. Goalie Spencer Martin stopped 27 shots in a strong performance.

Calgary is on a 5-1-1 run that has vaulted them into third place in the Pacific Division, but that success came with some tense moments.

After a scoreless opening frame, Lindholm finally opened the scoring 81 seconds into the second period. Lindholm, playing his 700th career game, was sprung on an odd-man rush and ripped a top-corner shot for his 12th goal of the season.

Coleman’s short-handed goal just before the midway point of the clash doubled the lead. Taking advantage of a poor Canucks line change, Rasmus Andersson sped away on a two-on-one rush that ended with Coleman converting a crossing pass for his sixth goal of the season.

Weegar finished a dominating shift for his team with a long, top-shelf wrist shot at 14:17 of the middle frame to make it a 3-0 affair. It snapped a 39-game drought for the defenseman acquired in the offseason in the big trade with the Florida Panthers.

Dries gave the visitors a much-needed jolt when he put them on the board just over a minute later when he batted the puck out of midair for his fourth goal of the season.

Pettersson made it a one-goal game 4:06 into the third period. After forcing a turnover, he pounced on a loose puck at the side of the net for his 17th goal of the season. Pettersson has collected 10 points (4-6-10) in a five-game point streak.

From there, Markstrom stood tall, with big saves on Quinn Hughes and Pettersson in the final minutes while the Canucks pushed for the equalizer.

–Field Level Media