NHL Game Summary - Nashville at Columbus |
(Friday, December 23rd)
Final Score: Nashville 5, Columbus 4
Columbus, OH (Sports Network) - Yanic Perreault and Scottie Upshall each
notched a goal and an assist to lead the Nashville Predators to a 5-4 victory
over the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena.
Paul Kariya added three assists and Tomas Vokoun made 35 saves for the
Predators, who have won their last five games.
Jaroslav Balastik had two goals and Duvie Westcott added a goal and an assist
for the Blue Jackets, who have lost their last six games. Pascal Leclaire and
Marc Denis combined to make just 17 saves in the loss.
The Predators opened up the scoring early on a goal by Scott Hartnell. Kimmo
Timonen let fly with a slap shot from the right point that Leclaire made a
save on. However, the rebound went right to Hartnell in front, and he poked it
in for a power-play tally at the 4:24 mark of the first period.
The Blue Jackets tied it up with a power-play goal of their own. Jan Hrdina
sent a pass from the left boards to Balastik, who one-timed it from the right
circle with 8:54 remaining until the first intermission.
However, Nashville took the lead just 32 seconds later after Upshall flicked a
wrist shot from low in the left circle into the right corner of the net.
But Columbus tied it back up 25 seconds later. Westcott got the puck after a
faceoff win and sent a blast from the top of the left circle that went through
a screen and into the net.
The Predators, however, scored twice more to take a 4-2 lead into the second
period. Vernon Fiddler poked in a rebound from a Kariya point shot at the
14:17 mark, and Perreault took a pass from Kariya and flicked a wrist shot
from low in the right circle with 18 seconds left.
Denis took over netminding duties in the second period, as Leclaire was
benched after letting in four goals on 11 shots.
Nashville's Steve Sullivan was awarded a penalty shot near the midway point of
the second frame after being hauled down on a breakaway. However, Denis made a
glove save on his wrist shot to keep it a two-goal game.
However, Adam Hall made it 5-2 after flicking a wrist shot from low in the
left circle that beat Denis on the short side for a power-play goal with 4:53
remaining in the period.
Balastik made it a two-goal game once again after poking in his own rebound
for his second goal of the night with 2:42 left until the second intermission.
"He has been solid," said Blue Jackets coach Gerard Gallant of Balastik. "He
has a knack for scoring and has a quick shot. He is a smart player and doesn't
cause any chances against."
Columbus made it a 5-4 contest with a shorthanded tally late in the final
period. The puck was cleared from the Columbus zone and Jason Chimera outraced
Marek Zidlicky to get the puck. Chimera took it into the Nashville zone alone,
made a move to the forehand, and put the puck past a stretched out Vokoun with
5:57 to play. It was his first goal in 17 games.
The Blue Jackets pulled Denis with a little over one minute remaining, but
were unable to tie the game up.
"Having to fight back like we did I think showed a lot of heart," said Blue
Jackets captain Adam Foote. "We played an open game tonight and I think we had
to do that after getting behind early. We just have to get back to things
after the holiday and go back to work."
Columbus hosts Chicago on Monday...The Predators travel to Calgary for a
matchup on Tuesday...Nashville has won three straight against Columbus after
losing the previous three meetings...The Predators finished the game 3-for-7
on the power play...The Blue Jackets went 2-for-10 with the man
advantage...Sullivan had his five-game goal scoring streak stopped. He
finished the game with two assists, and has five goals and five assists over
the past six games.
12/24 02:44:46 ET