New York, NY - Ilya Kovalchuk scored two goals to lead the New Jersey Devils (12-29-2) in their 5-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Lighting (26-14-5) in hockey action on Friday night.
The Lightning were able to strike first on a power play opportunity at the 5:06 mark of the first period, when Steven Stamkos (32) recorded a slap shot for the 1-0 lead. Kovalchuk (11) would respond for the Devils at the 7:59 mark tallying a wrist shot to make the score 1-1.
New Jersey would then get the lead when Brian Rolston (3) would rip a slap shot at the 9:19 mark of that frame, which gave the Devils the 2-1 lead. Patrik Elias (10) would tally a slap shot of his own at the 11:44 mark to make the score 3-1. The offensive surge in that frame would end on a high note as Travis Zajac (7) would tally a short handed wrister at the 15:54 mark for the 4-1 lead.
In the second period Martin St. Louis (19) would be the lone goal scorer as he would get a backhanded shot, which cut the Devils lead to 4-2. The sniper Kovalchuk (12) would net a wrist shot at the 13:40 mark of the third period, that iced the Devils 5-2 victory.
New Jersey keeper Martin Brodeur would finish the night by making 30 saves, while Dan Ellis did a solid job for the Lightning filling in for keeper Dwayne Roloson. Ellis would finish the night making 15 saves.
The Devils will conclude their Florida road trip with a Saturday night 7:00 p.m. face-off with the Panthers.