Nice 4-3 Win in Montreal Brings Some Holiday Cheer to Somber Flyers Nation

Nice 4-3 Win in Montreal Brings Some Holiday Cheer to Somber Flyers Nation

The mood among Flyers faithful was rather somber on Thursday night as word of Chris Pronger being out for the entire season hit Twitter and eventually the game's telecast itself. Never easy to hear such bad news. The Flyers who were on the ice did their best to try and cheer the down orange and black fans by delivering a nice road victory.

The Flyers got on the board first when Goal Scorer Max Talbot got a wrister past Carey Price. Jake Voracek and Cooter got the helpers. Voracek has really capitalized on the additional ice time given to him lately and tonight was no different. It's always fun to see a guy really work every play.

Montreal fought back all night and even things up at one apiece.  The theme of the night on defense seemed to be a ton traffic in front of the net and David Day-Are-Nay was very patient on the goal, waiting until Bob was down on the ice before drilling the tying goal up high.

It only took 46 for Harry Z to get one back, while falling to the ice, he  managed to find a way to put the puck on net and it found its way past Carey Price to put them up 2-1. A highlight reel goal to be sure.

Luis LeBlanc found a PK Subban rebound right in front of the net with plenty of room to slam it home for his first NHL goal. Not much Bob could do with that one.

Wayne Simmonds hanging around in front of the net with just about two minutes left in the second paid off off once again. With minimal space to work with, Simmonds was chopping away, which caused the puck to pop up into the air. He then gave it a little bump off his chest and it fell to Price's open stick side before Simmonds slammed it home. It pushed Wayne's goal-scoring streak to four games. He's a force down low. At this point, every opponent knows it's part of the game plan, and yet Wayne continues to have his way.

The Flyers caught a bit of a bad break to end the second period when the refs opted not to call a penalty on the Canadiens after Jaromir Jagr was upended on a potential scoring opportunity. Montreal immediately took it down the other end and the refs decided to give them a penalty on Braydon Coburn for crosschecking which led to the Canadiens third goal on a goofy deflection that popped over Bob's head.

The Flyers were the only team to score in an entertaining third period, securing the very nice road victory.

After a shaky clear by Price with about 12 minutes to play, the Flyers got the turnover and worked the puck around pretty nicely, led by Jagr's sweet patience, which eventually set up Big Mez for a huge one-timer to put the Flyers up 4-3 for good.

Bob was great for most of the night and especially so late in the third when Montreal was getting plenty of good looks with plenty of traffic in front. The refs certainly weren't helping the Flyers at all in this one, so it's extra nice to get their seventh straight win. They haven't won seven straight since January of 2002, according to JJ on the telecast.

There's a lot of crazy shit going on around the team right now, but they're playing well, and no matter what else, the history books will show the simple fact that they went to Montreal and won tonight. That's always enjoyable.

Potential Awesome HBO Moment Next Wednesday: Wayne Simmonds was yapping like crazy late in the third, with what looked like an "I'll f%&$ing kill you!" aimed at some Canadien.

No. 10 Washington dominates No. 7 Stanford in rout

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No. 10 Washington dominates No. 7 Stanford in rout

SEATTLE -- Jake Browning threw for 210 yards and three touchdowns, Myles Gaskin added 100 yards and two scores, and No. 10 Washington was dominant on both sides, overwhelming No. 7 Stanford 44-6 on Friday night.

After months of hype that Washington (5-0, 2-0 Pac-12) was on the verge of a breakout, the Huskies showed they were ready for their return to the national stage.

And they did it emphatically, handing Stanford (3-1, 2-1) its worst loss since a 41-3 setback against Arizona State in 2007.

The Huskies raced to a 23-0 halftime lead, scored early in the second half to go up 30-0 and coasted to their biggest victory over an AP Top 10 team since beating No. 5 Southern California 31-0 in 1990. That game 26 years ago announced Washington as a national contender and the Huskies went on to share the national title a year later with Miami -- taking the coaches' version while Miami topped the AP media poll.

Browning was the leader of an efficient offense that scored on six of its eight drives. He threw touchdowns of 3 yards to Dante Pettis, 19 yards to John Ross and capped the night with a 3-yarder to Aaron Fuller with 5:30 remaining. Browning was 15 of 21 and did not commit a turnover.

Equally important was Washington's ability to establish a running game. The Huskies rushed for 214 yards and averaged 5.2 yards per carry.

Meanwhile, Stanford star Christian McCaffrey saw his Heisman Trophy aspirations hit a major speed bump. McCaffrey was held to 49 yards rushing on 12 carries, five catches for 30 yards and continued his streak of never scoring an offensive touchdown in a road game.

It was McCaffrey's fewest yards rushing since 2014 at California when he had 19 yards on three carries.

Stanford's only TD came late in the third quarter on a 19-yard pass from Ryan Burns to J.J. Arcega-Whiteside.

Burns was 15 of 22 for 151 yards, but Washington controlled the line of scrimmage on both sides. Stanford quarterbacks were sacked eight times, six in the first half. Stanford had allowed only four total sacks in the first three games combined.

Stanford was playing short-handed without starting cornerbacks Quenton Meeks and Alijah Holder, starting wide receiver Francis Owusu and starting fullback Daniel Marx. Starting right tackle Casey Tucker limped off with an apparent leg injury late in the fourth quarter.

Takeaways
Stanford: The Cardinal were unexpectedly sloppy. Stanford committed 11 penalties after entering the week as the least penalized team in the Pac-12. There were communication issues in part due to the roaring Washington crowd, but also a lack of sharpness not normally seen from David Shaw's team.

Washington: The defense was up to the task of keeping McCaffrey under control and forcing Burns to beat them through the air. McCaffrey had 34 yards on 10 carries in the first half and forced the Cardinal into numerous long third-down situations. That allowed Washington to bring extra pass rushers to get to Burns.

Up Next
Stanford: The Cardinal head home after two straight weeks on the road to host Washington State.

Washington: The Huskies travel to Oregon looking to snap a 12-game losing streak to the Ducks.

Best of MLB: Darvish stars as Rangers beat Rays 3-1 and clinch home field

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Best of MLB: Darvish stars as Rangers beat Rays 3-1 and clinch home field

ARLINGLTON, Texas -- Yu Darvish looked playoff-ready with a season-high 12 strikeouts in six innings as the Texas Rangers beat the Tampa Bay Rays 3-1 on Friday night and clinched home-field advantage throughout the postseason.

The Rangers can be tied by only the Cleveland Indians and they own the tie-breaker by winning the teams' season series. The AL owns home-field advantage in the World Series thanks to its win in the All-Star Game.

Darvish (7-5) allowed one run, three hits and one walk. His 28th career game of double-digit strikeouts is the second-most in a pitcher's first 100 major league starts, topped only by Dwight Gooden (31). Darvish will likely start Game 2 of the Division Series following Cole Hamels.

Shin-Soo Choo returned to Texas' lineup after missing 39 games with a fractured left forearm. Choo pulled a single to right in his first plate appearance since Aug. 15 and went 1 for 4.

Matt Andriese (8-8) gave up three runs and seven hits, including solo home runs to Carlos Beltran and Rougned Odor (see full story). 

Cabrera hits 2 HRs, Tigers move up in playoff race, beat Braves
ATLANTA -- Miguel Cabrera hit two home runs, Ian Kinsler and Justin Upton also connected and the Detroit Tigers moved up in the playoff race, beating the Atlanta Braves 6-2 Friday night.

The Tigers won their third straight and pulled within a half-game of Toronto for the second AL wild-card spot. The Blue Jays lost at Boston 5-3.

The regular season is scheduled to end Sunday, but the Tigers might need to play beyond that. They were rained out against Cleveland this week and would have to make up that game if it impacts their playoff chances.

Daniel Norris (4-2) gave up one run, five hits, two walks and struck out eight in 6 2/3 innings.

The Braves, playing their final series at Turner Field before moving north to the suburbs next year, had won 10 of 11. Matt Wisler (7-13) was chased in the fifth when James McCann's RBI single made it 5-0 (see full story).

Trumbo hits 47th, Schoop 5 RBIs as Orioles top Yankees 8-1
NEW YORK -- Mark Trumbo hit his major league-leading 47th home run, Jonathan Schoop and Adam Jones also went deep in a six-run fifth inning and the Baltimore Orioles beat the New York Yankees 8-1 in steady rain Friday night to maintain their AL wild-card lead.

Baltimore began the night tied with Toronto for the AL's two wild cards at 87-72, with Detroit 1 1/2 games back and Seattle trailing the Tigers by a half-game.

Trumbo and Jones homered off Michael Pineda (6-12), who started with 3 2/3 hitless innings and suddenly became ineffective.

Schoop tied his career high with five RBIs, hitting a go-ahead, two-run double in the fourth and adding a three-run homer in the fifth against James Pazos -- Baltimore's big league-high 250th home run this season.

Yovani Gallardo (6-8) won for just the second time in nine starts since Aug. 5, allowing two hits, three walks and Mark Teixeira's sacrifice fly in six innings (see full story). 

Ortiz delivers another HR, Red Sox beat Blue Jays 5-3
BOSTON -- Opening his final weekend with yet another game-winning homer, David Ortiz lined a two-run shot into the right-field stands to break a seventh-inning tie and help the Boston Red Sox beat the Toronto Blue Jays 5-3 on Friday night.

The AL East champion Red Sox snapped a three-game losing streak and stayed one game ahead of Cleveland in the race for home-field advantage for the playoffs.

The Blue Jays fell one game behind Baltimore in the wild-card race and are now within range of Detroit and Seattle in the fight for the AL's final postseason berth (see full story).