RALEIGH — With the game on his stick, Carolina Hurricanes forward Chris Terry said he had just one thought.
"Stick to what works," he said.
And why not? That's what the Hurricanes had done for 60 minutes and then an overtime Friday against the Anaheim Ducks, a physical, highly skilled team,
In the shootout, Terry had a chance to end it and did. He took the puck at center ice, skated in on Ducks goalie Viktor Fasth and lifted a backhander into the net for a 3-2 victory.
That's when Terry had another thought.
"I was overwhelmed," he said. "It was a big win from an emotional standpoint for us.
"To compete like that and come out on top is huge. We played a very good team over there and we stuck to our game plan."
In the fifth game of a critical homestand, the Canes topped a team that has been hindered by injuries and more recently by the flu bug, that lost Thursday at Tampa Bay. They also won against a team that perhaps is the NHL's best.
Eric Staal and Drayson Bowman had the goals for the Canes (8-7-4), who followed up a five-game losing streak by going 4-0-1 at PNC Arena. Staal scored on a power play with 16.8 seconds left in the second period, tying the score 1-1, and Bowman's goal on a swift, strong move to the net gave the Canes a 2-1 lead early in the third.
Corey Perry, one of the Ducks players who has been fighting the flu, scored in the second. He then set up Dustin Penner for a power-play goal in the third as the Ducks (15-5-2) tied it 2-2.
The Canes had good scoring opportunities in the overtime, getting off four shots, but it soon was on to a shootout.
The one loss in the run of home games was a 3-2 shootout decision against the Minnesota Wild, when Canes goalie Justin Peters allowed goals to all three Wild shooters. And Carolina was 0-3 in shootouts this season.
"Sometimes you get in shootouts and get tense," Peters said. "Tonight I just tried to relax a little more. Enjoy the moment."
Peters stopped the Ducks' Teemu Selanne to start the shootout. Riley Nash then scored for the Canes, the puck bouncing off the post and off Fasth's back.
Perry beat Peters, and Fasth stopped a shot by Semin. When the Ducks' Ryan Getzlaf was wide on his attempt, it was up to Terry.
Terry, recalled Nov. 6 from the Charlotte Checkers of the AHL, scored the only shootout goal for the Canes against the Wild. His shot against Fasth was exactly the same -- backhand, top shelf, glove side.
"I just made my move and hoped for the best," Terry said. "(Fasth) didn't watch the video, I guess."
Canes center Jordan Staal, smiling, noted Terry was the perfect choice for a shootout, saying, "He's got good hands and a slow heart beat."
So ended a game Jordan Staal said was tight throughout, with little back and forth but a lot of battles.
The first Canes goal initially was credited to Alexander Semin, who snapped off a shot from the left circle. Staal and Tuomo Ruutu screened Fasth, and Staal got a piece of the puck for his fourth goal of the season.
Bowman, who had six of the Canes' 23 shots, powered around Ducks defenseman Bryan Allen to score. He also could have added another goal or two had Fasth not been sharp.
Peters, gaining confidence with each game, made his ninth straight start for the Canes and had 28 saves.
"He's had a great homestand and done a great job," Canes coach Kirk Muller said. "But the nice thing is it has been complete effort from everyone in our lineup, from our defense, goaltending, forwards, four lines, all 20 guys helping out and contributing to these wins. To come out on top and beat the best team in the league has to be a nice feeling for our players."
Alexander: 919-829-8945 Twitter: @ice_chip