Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Penguins 4, Panthers 0 Top Line Features Trick to Winning Crosby Scores Three with Guentzel, Sheary Contributing in Victory

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Penguins 4, Panthers 0 Top Line Features Trick to Winning Crosby Scores Three with Guentzel, Sheary Contributing in Victory

Article excerpt

Take a quick glance at the box score from the Penguins' 4-0 win against Florida Sunday at PPG Paints Arena, and it might look like the official scorer's copy-and-paste feature had malfunctioned:

Crosby, from Guentzel and Sheary.

Crosby, from Guentzel and Sheary.

Crosby, from Guentzel and Sheary.

Really, though, it was just the Penguins' new ruthlessly efficient top line. The trio hooked up for three goals Sunday - all finished off by Sidney Crosby - to continue their red-hot run of recent play.

Since formally joining together against Edmonton last week, the three have combined for 26 points in the past six games.

"It's been good," Crosby said. "I think the main thing is that we're consistently getting chances. With that, it doesn't matter who gets them, but they'll go in."

Against the Panthers Sunday, Crosby played that role, scoring his 38th, 39th and 40th goals of the season in the second and third periods to send the Penguins cruising to an easy win.

Crosby now has 40 goals for the second time in his career, and is in sole possession of the NHL lead, three goals clear of Boston's Brad Marchand in second. His natural hat trick also moved him into a tie with Edmonton's Connor McDavid for the overall NHL points lead with 11 games remaining.

Crosby had a seven-game run from Feb. 28 to March 11 without a goal, but has ended that with six in his past four games. Sunday, he scored off a wrist shot, a backhander and a one-timer.

"He's leading the league in goals, and that's not by accident," Conor Sheary said. "He's shooting the puck from everywhere and he's beating the goalies a lot. Getting the puck in his hands is never a bad thing."

They clearly did that effectively against the Panthers. Crosby's three goals came after Patric Hornqvist put the Penguins up, 1-0, in the first period with a swinging goal on a puck in midair. …

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