The Canadiens scored three goals in a 4:48 span midway through the first period and then held on for a 3-2 win over the Washington Capitals Friday night at the Verizon Centre. The Canadiens received another strong effort from backup goaltender Peter Budaj, who ran his record this season to 4-1-0. But Budaj had plenty of help as his teammates kept the pressure on, outshooting the Capitals 31-27. Washington managed only three shots in the second period.

The best of Budaj: Jason Chimera had a breakaway in the first period but Budaj broke it up with a tackle that was worth the two-minute penalty. Budaj stopped Joel Ward on a third-period short-handed breakaway and then stopped the rebound attempt by Chimera. Those saves proved to be game-savers when Alex Ovechkin scored his second goal of the game at 12:27. Ovechkin leads the NHL with 19 goals.

Drought ends for Moen: Travis Moen opened the scoring against Michal Neuvirth with a goal at 8:53. Moen had gone 46 games since his last goal on Feb. 21.

Desharnais stays hot: David Desharnais, who broke out of a slump in Tuesday’s win over Minnesota, scored his first goal of the season when he deflected a rising slap shot by Josh Gorges to give the Canadiens a 2-0 lead at 11:53. This goal survived a video review to determine if Desharnais’s stick was too high.

Big night for Gorges: With P.K. Subban in the penalty box, Josh Gorges received some rare time on the power play and he threaded a pass to Daniel Brière to give Montreal a 3-0 lead at 13:40. The two points matched Gorges’s career high for points in a game.

Bend it like Ovechkin: Alex Ovechkin scored his 18th goal of the season when he beat Budaj from a sharp angle on a power play with 23 seconds remaining in the first period. Ovechkin has 33 points in 30 regular-season games against Montreal.