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Associated Press
12/13/2006 10:34:06 PM


PITTSBURGH (AP) - Sidney Crosby took over the NHL scoring lead with a career-high six points to lead the Pittsburgh Penguins to an 8-4 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers on Wednesday night.

Crosby had one goal and five assists to give him 47 points, three more than New York Rangers captain Jaromir Jagr.

Sergei Gonchar had two goals and three assists, Ryan Malone added one goal and three assists, and Mark Recchi had a goal and assist for the Penguins, who have won three straight. Gonchar and Malone also set career highs in points.

Ryan Potulny had a goal and an assist, and Alexandre Picard set up two goals for the Flyers, who have lost five straight and have the worst record in the Eastern Conference (8-19-4).

The night belonged to Crosby, 19, whose previous best was four points in a game - done three times in his one-plus NHL seasons. Crosby has a goal in five straight games and 15 points in six contests.

Crosby has 29 points in 13 career games against the Flyers, including 15 in five games this season - all Penguins victories.

The first five goals of this game were scored in fewer than 13 minutes. The first three came within a span of 1:27 less than six minutes after the opening faceoff. Three of the first-period goals were deflected by players into their own net.

After the Penguins' Chris Thorburn scored his third a little more than four minutes in, Crosby gave Pittsburgh a 2-0 lead 60 seconds later when his centring pass to Malone appeared to go off the skate of Flyers defenceman Derian Hatcher and past goalie Antero Niittymaki. It was Crosby's 15th goal of the season.

The Penguins appeared on the way to another rout after outscoring Philadelphia 20-7 in the first four meetings. But the Flyers rallied.

Just four minutes later, Potulny was credited with the Flyers' first goal 27 seconds after Crosby's tally. This time the puck went in off the skate of Pittsburgh defenceman Brooks Orpik.

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