NHL Game Summary - Columbus at Chicago
(Friday, February 27th)
Final Score: Columbus 4, Chicago 3
Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Luke Richardson scored with 2:51 remaining to lift the Columbus Blue Jackets to a 4-3 come-from-behind victory over the Chicago Blackhawks at the United Center.
Geoff Sanderson, Tim Jackman, and David Vyborny each recorded a goal and an assist as the Blue Jackets snapped their five-game losing streak. Fred Brathwaite turned aside 33 shots to backstop the win.
Kyle Calder, Bryan Berard and Brett McLean tallied for the Blackhawks, who have lost four of their last six games. Michael Leighton allowed four goals on the 29 shots he faced.
Richardson's first marker of the year capped a string of three unanswered goals for Columbus. Richardson's wrist shot from the point beat Leighton to the glove side as he was screened in front by Rick Nash. The goal was the first ever by Richardson in 129 games as a member of the Blue Jackets.
"I pretty much blinded myself instead of trying to look around," said Leighton.
Trailing 3-1 late in the second frame, Vyborny closed the gap to one goal with his 18th of the campaign on a rebound opportunity just 54 seconds before the second-period buzzer.
"Last game was frustrating," said Richardson. "We had 40 shots and played really well. What we wanted was to do that again tonight and turn the table. We had the same effort but had to bear down a little bit. The key was that we fought hard to get that goal in the last minute of the second period."
Columbus evened the score with 8:58 to go in regulation on Sanderson's breakaway tally. Sanderson picked up the puck at center ice and sprinted by defenseman Jason Strudwick and was home free, beating Leighton stick side.
Aaron Johnson had a golden opportunity to put the Blue Jackets in front with about four minutes remaining on a breakaway of his own. Johnson emerged from the penalty box, and picked up a stray puck at neutral ice, but his five-hole attempt was denied by Leighton.
Brathwaite stopped 13 shots to keep the Blackhawks off the board in the final 20 minutes, giving his team a chance for the win.
"It's nice to get that win," said Brathwaite. "It's been quite some time since I've had a win and played a half-decent game. The guys played extremely well. To come in here and play as hard as we did is nice."
Calder's 19th of the season opened the scoring on an odd-man rush just past the midway point of the first period. After Matt Keith's initial shot was stopped by Brathwaite, the disc bounced around on the doorstep before Calder slammed home the loose puck for the 1-0 advantage, a lead Chicago took into the first intermission.
Jackman registered his first NHL goal to knot it up for the Blue Jackets in the second minute of the middle stanza. Sanderson was behind the cage when he fed one out front to Jackman, and the puck was in the net before Leighton even had a chance to turn around.
"Sanderson was able to slide the puck out to me in the slot," said Jackman. "It feels pretty good, I was happy to contribute. "I didn't have any thoughts about when I would score my first goal. I'll just take 'em when I can get them."
Chicago answered with two power-play goals in a span of 7 1/2 minutes to jump out to a 3-1 advantage. Berard blasted one from the top of the circle 9:16 in, followed by a McLean snap shot from the left circle that Brathwaite couldn't keep out, a shot he surely would have liked back.
The points by Jackman were the first two of his eight-game NHL career...Jackets' center Todd Marchant added two assists...Chicago finished 2- for-6 on the power play while Columbus was 1-for 5 with the extra skater...Calder overtook Mark Bell for the team lead in goals.
02/28 00:37:34 ET