NHL Game Summary - Washington at St. Louis
(Wednesday, December 1st)
Final Score: Washington 4, St. Louis 1
St. Louis, MO (Sports Network) - Nicklas Backstrom scored twice and added an assist, while Semyon Varlamov stopped 37 shots as Washington won in St. Louis for the first time in 14 years with a 4-1 victory.
Boyd Gordon and Brooks Laich each had a goal for the Capitals, who won in St. Louis for the first time since October 26, 1996. The team had dropped their previous eight games in the Gateway City.
"I think this was his best game cause he smothered everything that came his way," said Washington head coach Bruce Boudreau about Varlamov. "When we needed to get a faceoff and win a faceoff he would smother the puck and give us that chance.
Alexander Steen scored the lone goal for the Blues, who have dropped their past four contests. Jaroslav Halak was charged with three goals on 25 shots in the loss.
"We obviously didn't make the quantity or quality plays we needed to make," said St. Louis forward David Backes. "There are some positives we can take from this game, but we didn't get the result we wanted. We just have to keep playing our game and it will come around."
Skating on the power play in the first, the Caps took a 1-0 lead with crisp passing. Alex Ovechkin started the play with a pass from the left point to the low left circle. Alexander Semin handled it there and skated to the top of the left circle where he fired it across the ice for Backstrom, who sent it back to the low left side where Laich slammed it home at the 8:12 mark.
Varlamov stopped 13 shots in the first period and helped the Caps kill off two power plays.
Halfway through the second, Washington made it a 2-0 game as the puck went into the net during a scrum in front with Gordon getting credit for his first goal of the season.
St. Louis cut its deficit in half with just 32 seconds left on the second period clock when Steen threw a shot on net from the left point that went through a screen.
Washington regained its two-goal edge at the 7:06 mark of the third. Mike Knuble drove a loose puck from the slot on net that Halak stopped, but Backstrom was down low to bang home the rebound.
Backstrom then sealed the win in the final minute with an empty-net goal.
Washington plays at Dallas on Thursday...St. Louis hits the road for the next two games with the first in Edmonton on Saturday...Washington has won its last four games...St. Louis fell to 8-2-1 at home this season, while Washington is 6-5-1 as the visiting team.
12/01 23:59:58 ET