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Associated Press
1/9/2007 9:49:44 PM


WASHINGTON (AP) - Alex Ovechkin scored his 27th and 28th goals, and the Washington Capitals celebrated the franchise's first season sweep of the slumping Philadelphia Flyers with a 6-2 victory Tuesday night.

The Capitals won their third straight by showing no mercy on a neighbourhood rival that has given them fits for decades. Washington was winless (0-18-6) in its six seasons against the Flyers and recently had a 16-game winless streak in Philadelphia.

But this season, with the Flyers at the bottom of the league standings, the Capitals were perfect - 4-0 - against Philadelphia for the first time in Washington's 32 NHL seasons.

Ben Clymer scored on the game's first shift, former Philadelphia enforcer Donald Brashear got his first goal of the season, Alexander Semin added his 22nd goal and Brian Sutherby also netted for the Capitals. Olie Kolzig made 31 saves and was especially impenetrable when the Flyers had a fruitless 5-on-3 advantage for 1:23 during the second period.

Ovechkin also assisted on Semin's goal, giving him nine goals and 16 points in eight career games against Philadelphia. He has 12 goals and 32 points in his last 18 games overall.

Kyle Calder scored the two third-period consolation goals - one on a power play, the other short-handed - for the Flyers, who lost their fourth straight and finished 3-5 on their season-long, eight-game road trip. Captain Peter Forsberg missed his fourth straight game with a strained groin; Philadelphia is 0-13-3 when he's not in the lineup.

The Flyers coaching staff held a candid, air-it-out meeting with team's veterans before practice in Washington on Monday, but whatever inspiration they might have drawn from it dissipated 15 seconds into the game when goaltender Robert Esche allowed a soft goal on Clymer's slap shot. Esche misjudged the puck and allowed it to trickle between his side and left arm.

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