Craig Smith scored four goals and Taylor Beck had a goal and three assists as the Nashville Predators routed the Tampa Bay Lightning 7-3 Monday in a rookie scrimmage in Coral Springs, Fla.
Smith, who decided late in the summer for forgo his remaining eligibility at the University of Wisconsin, scored three times in a span of 8:03 as the Predators prospects took control of the game. His first broke a 1-1 tie with 4:01 to play in the first period, and he followed with two more early in the second to complete the natural hat trick to make it 4-1. His last goal was the first of three third-period Nashville tallies.
Beck, a third-round pick in 2009, gave the Predators a 1-0 lead 10 seconds into the contest and then added assists on three of Smith’s four goals.
Gabriel Bourque assisted on each of the first four goals. Austin Watson, the team’s 2010 first-round choice, capped the scoring for Nashville with an unassisted goal at 18:06 of the third.
Goalies Chet Pickard and Atte Engren split time in goal and faced 22 and 21 shots, respectively. Pickard allowed two goals and Engren allowed one.
Predators rookies began workouts Saturday. They will conclude two days of scrimmages with the Lightning and Panthers on Tuesday.
The team officially opens training camp Friday with off-ice testing. The first day of on-ice practices is Saturday.