Blues’ Halak makes just 12 saves while shutting out Oilers
Friday, March 25, 2011
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Jaroslav Halak needed to make only 12 saves to earn his sixth shutout of the season and T.J. Oshie had a goal and an assist in the St. Louis Blues’ 4-0 victory over the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday night.
It was a matchup of Western Conference foes who are out of the playoff picture, with the Blues winning for only the second time in six games (2-4) while extending the Oilers’ winless streak to eight (0-6-2).
Matt D’Agostini, Chris Stewart and Adam Cracknell also scored for the Blues, who avoided falling below .500 for the first time this season.
Nikolai Khabibulin took the loss for the Oilers, who have scored only seven goals during their skid.
Edmonton’s shot total matched a season low and they didn’t register a shot in the third period until there was 1:08 remaining in the game.
Oshie snapped a scoreless stalemate with 1:32 left in the second period with a wrist shot from the low right circle, beating Khabibulin high on the short side to give the Blues a 1-0 lead.
D’Agostini extended the lead 2:12 into the third period by snapping a shot that squirted between Khabibulin’s pads from the low left circle.
Stewart added his 10th goal with the Blues and 23rd overall since coming in a trade with Colorado on Feb. 19 by finishing off Oshie’s feed from the slot 8:30 into the third period.
Cracknell made it 4-0 with a one-time finish of a cross-ice feed from Kevin Shattenkirk with 4:53 remaining.
Although there were no goals scored in the first period, there were three fights that kept the crowd entertained. Cam Janssen and Jim Vandermeer kicked things off in a lengthy bout, followed by Ryan Reaves and Theo Peckham after 1 second ticked off the clock. Then, B.J. Crombeen and Jean-Francois Jacques completed the fight hat trick near the end of the opening period.
Notes: Blues C Patrik Berglund (lower-body injury) missed his first game of the season. That leaves C David Backes and D’Agostini as the only players to have appeared in all 74 games this season. C T.J. Hensick was recalled from AHL Peoria to replace Berglund. ... The Blues are playing without D Barret Jackman (finger), LW Alex Steen (ankle), RW David Perron (concussion) and C Vladimir Sobotka (foot). ... The Blues have killed 26 consecutive Oilers power plays dating to the 2008-09 season.
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