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Devils retake series lead after Zajac's OT winner

TRAVIS Zajac scored almost five minutes into overtime to give the New Jersey Devils a 3-2 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday, the win helping the visitors retake the lead in their playoff series.

Zach Parise assisted on Zajac's goal after he opened the scoring for the third-seeded Devils, who lost at home to Carolina in overtime on Friday but moved 2-1 ahead in their best-of-seven Eastern Conference quarterfinal with the road win.

In the other Eastern Conference playoff, the Flyers found home ice much more to their liking with a 6-3 victory after two losses in Pittsburgh, Simon Gagne scoring twice to reduce Philadelphia's deficit to 2-1.

In the West, third-seeded Vancouver took a 3-0 series lead over St Louis with a 3-2 road victory and Anaheim won again at top-seeded San Jose, this time by a 3-2 margin.

In Raleigh, the Devils ended a streak of five consecutive overtime playoff losses to the Hurricanes with Zajac's second-chance shot.

"It (the puck) came right back to me and I was able to get it up," Zajac told reporters.

On the first attempt, "(Carolina netminder Cam) Ward made a really good save on Travis' first shot," Parise said.

But Zajac was able to send the rebound to the top corner of the net.

Injured captain

New Jersey, playing without injured captain Jamie Lagenbrunner, never trailed in the game with Carolina twice rallying to tie the contest.

Parise gave the Devils a 1-0 lead 6:04 into the first period with the Hurricanes pulling level on Ryan Bayda's goal 31 seconds later. Brian Gionta put New Jersey in front again with less than nine seconds remaining in the first period before Chad LaRose delivered the equalizer with 4:20 to play in the second.

In Philadelphia, the Flyers scored three consecutive goals after the Penguins rallied from a 0-2 deficit to tie the score. Claude Giroux delivered the go-ahead score. Evgeni Malkin scored twice for Pittsburgh.

In St Louis, Steve Bernier scored the game-winner on a power-play just 1:41 into the third period and Vancouver can claim the series with a fourth straight win today.

In San Jose, third-period goals by Andrew Ebbett and Drew Miller gave Anaheim a 3-1 lead with less than seven minutes remaining. However, Jonathan Cheechoo brought San Jose to within a goal 37 seconds after Miller's score but Jonas Hiller, who made 42 saves, was able to keep the Sharks out for the remainder of the game.


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