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Lightning loses a ‘stinker’ against Columbus Blue Jackets

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For the Tampa Bay Lightning, Friday night’s game was one to forget.

The Bolts fell behind the Columbus Blue Jackets 2-0 in the first, then gave up a pair of quick goals in their attempt to come back. In the second period, Tampa Bay scored to narrow the deficit to 2-1, but gave up a third goal in 29 seconds. In the third, they fought back to tie the game at 3-3, but gave up a fourth goal 57 seconds later.

“We were just rotten, that’s it from start to finish,” said Bolts’ coach Jon Cooper. “I don’t even know how else to put it. We play 82 games, and I think we just chalk that one up to a stinker. We got taught a lesson from a team who worked way harder than us. We wanted to skill the game and not get in anybody’s way and that’s what happens. I know it was 3-3, but the right team won the hockey game. I give our guys credit, they fought back, but we just made way too many mistakes.”

 Tampa Bay managed only four shots in the first period and only nine more in the second. Ben Bishop gave up five goals.

“Obviously they got off to a good start, but we did a good job of coming back,” said Bishop. “We battled our way back to a tie in the third. I’ve got to come up with a big save there. I feel like I let the guys down, but you’ve got to put it past you and get ready for the next one.”

Tampa Bay now has a three-game road trip beginning Sunday in Boston.

Gary Shelton is one of the most recognized and honored sportswriters in the history of the state. He has won the APSE's national columnist of the year twice and finished in the top 10 eight times. He was named the Florida Sportswriter of the Year six times. Gary joined SaintPetersBlog in the spring, helping to bring a sports presence to the website. Over his time in sports writing, Gary has covered 29 Super Bowls, 10 Olympics, Final Fours, Masters, Wimbledons and college national championships. He was there when the Bucs won a Super Bowl, when the Lightning won a Stanley Cup and when the Rays went to a World Series. He has seen Florida, FSU and Miami all win national championships, and he covered Bear Bryant, Bobby Bowden and Don Shula along the way. He and his wife Janet have four children: Eric, Kevin, K.C. and Tori. To contact, visit

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