NHL Game Summary - Columbus at St. Louis
(Friday, March 31st)
Final Score: Columbus 4, St. Louis 2
St. Louis, MO (Sports Network) - Rick Nash scored two goals to give the Columbus Blue Jackets a 4-2 victory over the slumping St. Louis Blues at the Savvis Center.
"We decided these last 20 games we wanted to build some momentum for next season," said Nash. "We got off to a terrible start this year and if we can start to build some momentum right now, hopefully that will forward onto the start of our season next year."
Pascal Leclaire made 28 saves while Jaroslav Balastik and Jason Chimera also scored for Columbus, which won its fourth straight game.
Columbus also set a new franchise record for wins in a season with 30.
Keith Tkachuk and Jamal Mayers tallied goals for the Blues, who have lost nine straight. Patrick Lalime allowed four goals on 20 shots.
"We got out of the gate pretty hard and we were ready to play," said Blues defenseman Kevin Dallman. "We played really good during the whole game, we got a lot of shots and rebounds and just got to get back at it tomorrow."
Tkachuk's 14th goal of the season gave the Blues a 1-0 lead 1:13 into the contest.
Columbus took over from there scoring the games next four goals.
The Blue Jackets evened the score at 1-1 on Balastik's 11th tally of the season. At the top of the right circle, Balastik took a feed from Jan Hrdina and unleashed a wrister that beat Leclaire high on the glove side.
Columbus jumped ahead 2-1 at 4:29 in the second stanza as Chimera pumped in a rebound on the doorstep after Lalime stopped Manny Malhotra's wrister from the left circle.
The Blue Jackets went up 3-1 with 3:30 left in the second period. David Vyborny forced a turnover deep in the St. Louis zone and got the puck to Nash in the slot. Nash then unleased a quick snap shot that beat Lalime high on his glove side.
Nash scored his second goal of the game 2:36 into the final frame to give the Blue Jackets a 4-1 edge. From the lower portion of the right circle, Nash let go a wrister that beat Lalime on the far side just inside the left post for the power-play tally.
St. Louis made it a two-goal game midway through the third on Mayers' 11th goal of the season, but they were unable to pull any closer the rest of the way.
Nash has 26 goals on the season...The Jackets are 4-2-1 against St. Louis this season...Vyborny has seven points while Malhotra has six points against the Blues this season...St. Louis' last win was a 3-2 overtime win over Columbus on March 13.
Blues Defenseman Kevin Dallman. "We got out of the gate pretty hard and we were ready to play. We played really good during the whole game, we got a lot of shots and rebounds and just got to get back at it tomorrow."
Blues forward Keith Tkachuk (falling behind three to one) " You're still in the game. We still had chances We probably should have shot a lot more, but we're not going to quit. We have no reason to quit. We don't have anybody in here who thinks they're good enough. We're playing for jobs next year."
Columbus goalie Pascal Pascal Leclaire (on Jamal Mayer's goal) "He kind of tapped my glove and it went out. It's kind of a fifty-fifty [play]. I should not have given a big rebound at first. I put myself in trouble."
Columbus forward Rick Nash "we decided these last 20 games we wanted to build some mometum for next season. We got off to a terrible start this year and if we can start to build some momentum right now, hopefully that will forward onto the start of our season next year."
Gerard Gallant "overall the game was pretty even, it could have went either way. Pascal (Leclaire) made a few big saves on them. We didn't play great, but we played well enough to win."
04/01 02:28:02 ET