NHL Game Summary - St. Louis at Nashville
(Thursday, April 1st)
Final Score: Nashville 3, St. Louis 2
Nashville, TN (Sports Network) - Steve Sullivan netted the game-winner in the third period to lead the Nashville Predators to a 3-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues at Bridgestone Arena.
Colin Wilson and Dustin Boyd also scored for the Predators, who rallied from a 2-0 deficit and held on to the fifth spot in the Western Conference playoff race, one point ahead of Detroit, which was also victorious on Thursday. The Predators visit Detroit on Saturday.
"It's going to be great to go to Detroit to play," Predators right wing Patric Hornqvist said. "We know it's going to be hard, but if we work like this, I know we have a good chance to win."
Pikka Rinne made 31 saves and Patric Hornqvist posted three assists in the victory.
Alex Steen and Andy McDonald scored for the Blues, who saw their three-game win streak halted. St. Louis, which has five games remaining, is six points behind the currently eighth-seeded Colorado Avalanche in the West. Chris Mason allowed three goals on 32 shots in the loss.
"We're going to hopefully win all five and give us 10 points," Blues right wing David Backes said. "We need help from other teams."
With the score tied 2-2 in the final stanza, Hornqvist sent a floating outlet pass from his own end that flew high above the neutral zone and bounced into the Preds' offensive zone. Sullivan gained control of the bouncing puck, maneuvered past Blues defenseman Barret Jackman and used his long reach to beat Mason on a partial breakaway from the right post with 13:55 to play in regulation.
Rinne was stellar throughout the third and ended with 12 saves over the final 20 minutes. The Blues pulled Mason with just over a minute to play, but failed to gain any high percentage scoring chances as the hosts held on for the win.
The Blues opened the scoring with a power-play goal 7:13 into the first period. With Hornqvist in the penalty box for a slashing minor, a shot from the centerpoint by Steen made its way past Rinne, who was screened and simultaneously run over by Backes in the crease.
At 3:11 of the second, the visitors moved ahead by two on McDonald's 22nd goal. After a turnover in the neutral zone, David Perron streaked down the left-wing side and, from the outer rim of the circle, sent a pass across the low slot for a successful redirection near the right post by McDonald.
Boyd's tally midway through the second cut the Nashville deficit in half.
With only four seconds remaining before the second intermission, the Preds knotted the contest thanks to a nice effort by Hornqvist, who worked tirelessly to keep pushing the puck through the slot despite facing two defenders. The puck finally squirted free in the low slot, and Wilson was in perfect position to scoop up the puck and beat Mason with a backhander from the top of the crease.
The Blues were 1-for-5 on the power play, while Nashville ended scoreless on five chances with the extra skater...Steen extended his career high in goals and now has 24 markers this season...It was Sullivan's 16th goal of 2009-10.
04/02 02:11:28 ET