All game, the Winnipeg Jets fans were serenading Reto Berra. He had the last laugh. The Calgary Flames goalie came up with 43 saves between regulation and overtime and held strong in the eight-round shootout to backstop his team to a 5-4 victory Monday night that finally snapped his team’s losing skid at six games. Thanks to Berra’s stops — 22 in the second period alone and six of eight shootout attempts — and Sean Monahan’s goal that won the skills contest in the eighth round, the Flames won for the first time since Nov. 3 in Chicago. “It’s not bad. You get into the game right away and it’s good,” Berra said of the heavy workload. “It doesn’t have to be every night like that.” Berra’s only other victory was a 42-save 3-2 overtime win over the defending Stanley Cup champion Blackhawks, which was his NHL debut. This one was even wilder and crazier. The Flames were in Winnipeg to face the Jets for the first time since the spring of 1996, and it was a clash right out of the long-gone Smythe Division days. Calgary took the lead four times before the MTS Centre sellout crowd of 15,004 only to see their edge disappear on each occasion. The last time was the worst, Bryan Little’s tally with 5.6 seconds left in regulation time that should have had the Flames reeling, especially their goalie. “That’s tough for your mental (state),” Berra said. “Everybody in the stadium was screaming. I tried to stay positive and take it as energy.” Instead of wilting into a second consecutive blown-lead defeat, the Flames managed to regroup and rode Berra’s shootout efforts to the victory which improves their record to 7-11-3. “We needed to win so bad,” Berra said. “I was happy when Mony scored. I thought, ‘Holy (crap) is it ever going to end?’ ” He wasn’t alone. “After the third shot, (Brian McGrattan) was starting to promote himself,” head coach Bob Hartley said. “He was saying, ‘I have the winner.’ We were saying, ‘One more, Grats.’ He was ready. The guys were having fun on the bench and we knew Reto would give us a chance to win.” Monahan, the club’s rookie sensation who’s regained his scoring touch lately, finally took advantage of the netminder’s efforts.
Flames top Jets in shootout
Calgary Sun | Nov 19