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Carl Hagelin is Rangers' most effective pest

Carl Hagelin of the Rangers celebrates his second

Carl Hagelin of the Rangers celebrates his second period goal against the Washington Capitals during Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals at Madison Square Garden. (May 8, 2013) Credit: Jim McIsaac

Speedy, stringy-haired Carl Hagelin led the Rangers in points Wednesday with a goal and two assists in their series-tying 4-3 victory over the Capitals at the Garden.

Hagelin, who was the Rangers' best player in their Game 1 loss at Washington before struggling with his legs in Game 2, was at his pesky best Wednesday. He assisted on the Rangers' first goal, scored their second and assisted on their fourth and final score.

"It's a great feeling," said Hagelin, who has two goals in the series after not scoring in 17 games in last year's playoffs. "Some games it happens and some games it doesn't. This was one of those games where I got to the right areas, I got good passes and good things happened."

Capitals goalie Braden Holtby gift-wrapped the Rangers' first goal when he attempted to clear a puck while out of the net but instead flipped it to Taylor Pyatt, who knocked it down. Hagelin grabbed the loose puck and fired a shot that was blocked, but Brad Richards knocked the rebound into the unattended net.

Hagelin's goal came at 10:13 of the second off a cross-ice feed from Derick Brassard and it gave the Rangers a 2-0 lead.

"Our secondary scoring has really helped us here in the past couple [games]," Rangers coach John Tortorella said.

Hagelin scored the Rangers' only goal in their 3-1 loss in the first game of the series. He didn't have the same burst in Game 2 and was without a point in Game 3, but he got it back Wednesday.

"I do think guys on the team feel good about themselves," Hagelin said. "We're a confident group in here. We do know that we can't play in Washington like the last game there, so we've got to come in and play better. We're not going to get too high because of this game."

New York Sports