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NHL: New York Rangers 3, Ottawa 2

April 23, 2012 at 10:09 PM

OTTAWA, April 23 (UPI) -- Brad Richards scored the go-ahead goal Monday and the New York Rangers avoided first-round elimination with a 3-2 victory over Ottawa.

With the score tied 1-1 late in the second period, Ottawa's Nick Foligno was whistled for a hotly disputed goaltender interference call, handing the Rangers a 4-on-3 power play. Richards unleashed a slap shot from the right circle that went underneath Senators goalie Craig Anderson to forge a decisive lead.

New York doubled the advantage only 2:11 later when first-round draft choice Chris Kreider notched his first professional goal off a Derek Stepan feed, and the Rangers held on to even their Eastern Conference quarterfinal series at three wins each.

Henrik Lundqvist turned aside 25-of-27 shots for top-seeded New York, which forced a decisive Game 7 Thursday at Madison Square Garden.

Chris Neil and Jason Spezza scored and Anderson finished with 19 saves for the Senators.

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