Ottawa Senators’ Magnus Paajarvi, left, of Sweden, and Vancouver Canucks’ Jake Virtanen collide during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, on Wednesday March 20, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Ottawa Senators’ Magnus Paajarvi, left, of Sweden, and Vancouver Canucks’ Jake Virtanen collide during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Vancouver, on Wednesday March 20, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Canucks hang on for 7-4 win over Senators

Horvat nets 2 for Vancouver

VANCOUVER — Bo Horvat scored twice and added an assist to help the Vancouver Canucks keep their playoff hopes alive with a 7-4 win over the depleted Ottawa Senators on Wednesday night.

Tanner Pearson also had two goals for Vancouver (32-32-10), while Brock Boeser, Jake Virtanen and Loui Eriksson, into an empty net, chipped in as well.

The Canucks, who won their third straight game, matched their longest winning streak of the season.

Elias Pettersson had two assists. He leads all rookies with 27 goals, 36 assists and 63 points.

The win moved Vancouver four points behind the idle Arizona Coyotes in the race for the second wild card spot in the Western Conference.

Horvat and Boeser both scored on the power play. The Canucks have scored five power-play goals in their last five games. That follows a stretch of four power-play goals in 17 games.

Canuck goaltender Jacob Markstrom stopped 21 shots.

Ottawa (25-42-6) made it interesting when Max Veronneau, Brady Tkachuk and Oscar Lindberg scored goals 4:48 apart in the third period. Anthony DuClair scored on the power play with under two minutes left with goaltender Craig Anderson on the bench.

Veronneau’s goal was in first his three NHL games since signing as a free agent after playing with Princeton University.

Anderson made 33 saves for Ottawa.

RELATED: Horvat scores 16 seconds into OT as Canucks beat Blackhawks

The last-place Senators saw a two-game win streak snapped. Ottawa played most of the game a player short after defenceman Cody Ceci left in the first period with an upper-body injury after blocking a shot.

The Canucks’ first power-play goal came in the opening period, just 31 seconds after Ceci was called for holding. Horvat redirected an Alex Edler shot for his 26th goal of the season.

A boarding penalty by Jean-Gabriel Pageau set up Boeser’s goal at 17:00 of the second. He took a pass from Edler and beat Anderson on a low, hard shot.

The second period was just 32 seconds old when Pearson put the Canucks up 2-0. Defenceman Alex Biega lifted a pass high into the Senators’ end. Pearson swatted the bouncing puck past Anderson.

Virtanen made it 3-0 at 5:56. He took a little chip pass from Jay Beagle, skated into the Ottawa zone and scored on a low shot to the glove side.

Pearson made it 5-0 with 57 seconds gone in the first.

NOTES: Pettersson received a first-period standing ovation in recognition of breaking the Canucks’ record of 60 points in a season by a rookie with an assist in Chicago Monday night. … Boeser has nine points on a career-high eight-game scoring streak (three goals, six assists). The Canucks opened a stretch of seven games at Rogers Arena, their longest homestand of the season. … Vancouver last won three straight games Dec. 6-11 with victories over Nashville, St. Louis and Columbus. … Ottawa’s Thomas Chabot, who has missed the last two games with a broken toe, is expected to play Saturday in Edmonton.

Jim Morris, The Canadian Press

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