TORONTO (AP) — James van Riemsdyk scored two goals to lead the Toronto Maple Leafs to a much-needed 5-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday night.
David Clarkson, Richard Panik and Roman Polak added goals for Toronto, which scored early in the first period and three times in the second to snap a three-game losing streak.
Alex Killorn and Steven Stamkos scored for Tampa Bay, which has dropped two straight after beating the Rangers in New York 5-1 on Monday.
Van Riemsdyk scored up high twice in the second period, beating goalie Ben Bishop over his glove at 12:31 and again on the power play at 15:15. Van Riemsdyk’s second goal gave the Maple Leafs a three-goal cushion heading into the third.
The usually high-scoring Lightning couldn’t break through Jonathan Bernier, who redeemed himself after being pulled from Tuesday’s 9-2 loss to Nashville after allowing three goals on 12 shots in 20 minutes.
Against the Lightning, Bernier was beaten on a rush when Killorn used Toronto defenseman Jake Gardiner as a screen and snapped in a short-handed goal to tie it in the first. Stamkos scored one in close late in the third with the goalie pulled and just over four minutes to play.
Despite a late Lightning charge in the final minute, Bernier recorded his sixth win of the season, stopping 26 shots.
Toronto’s second goal came as a result of a bad turnover by defenseman Matthew Carle, whose backhanded clearing attempt was easily picked off by Panik — the former Lightning forward — and promptly tucked past Bishop.
Van Riemsdyk was left alone to gather a rebound from Phil Kessel’s wrist shot later in the period. He flipped the puck past Bishop for the Leafs’ fourth goal.
Polak scored into an empty net to seal the win.