NHL Game Summary - St. Louis at Minnesota
(Saturday, April 7th)
Final Score: Minnesota 5, St. Louis 1
St. Paul, MN (Sports Network) - Niklas Backstrom made 24 saves as Minnesota slammed St. Louis, 5-1, at Xcel Energy Center.
Wyatt Smith scored two goals and Pierre-Marc Bouchard, Branko Radivojevic and Wes Walz each found the back of the net for the Wild (48-26-8), who are the seventh seed in the Western Conference and are looking at a first round matchup with Pacific Division champion Anaheim.
"(The Ducks are) a good team," said Backstrom. "Every team that gets to the playoffs is a good hockey team. It's going to be a challenge for us."
Peter Sejna scored the lone goal for the Blues (34-35-13), who finish the season with 81 points.
"We were looking to be over .500," said St. Louis' Christian Backman. "That would be something to be happy about. If you look at the situation back in December, we've made a lot of progress."
St. Louis netminder Jason Bacashihua gave up two goals on eight shots in the first period before being replaced by Curtis Sanford, who ended with 20 saves.
"It's a difficult way to end the season," said Sanford. "We didn't generate much in terms of offensive chances.
Minnesota struck just over eight minutes into the first period when Todd White found an open Bouchard for his 20th goal of the season. Then, with 3:51 left in the first, Radivojevic's one-timer from the left circle made it 2-0 Minnesota.
Sejna's goal 2:47 into the second period cut St. Louis' deficit in half, but Walz found the back of the net less than four minutes later to restore the Wild's two-goal cushion.
Smith then scored both of his goals in the third period for the final margin.
Minnesota went 1-for-5 on the power play, while St. Louis went 0-for-3 with the man-advantage...It was Smith's first career two-goal game...Minnesota won three of four against St. Louis this season and has won eight of 10 overall.
04/08 00:08:28 ET