– Photo By Ryan Leopando / Arch City Sports
Jake Allen has not seen ice time since being lit up in Long Island for three goals in the first period last Saturday. After finding themselves in a three goal deficit, the Blues rallied around Martin Brodeur to beat the Islanders 6-4. Allen would try his hand against these same Isles Thursday night at Scottrade with the Blues needing him to step up his game. Former teammate Jaroslav Halak would be in net for New York.
With just under six minutes passed in the first period, the Alex Steen got the Blues on the board with a power play goal. The Blues displayed some nice passing early. Vladimir Tarasenko dished to Kevin Shattenkirk across the ice, who found a wide open Steen a step in front of the blue line. Steen blasted a slap shot from the point to put the Blues up 1-0.
The Blues found the net from the point once more in the opening frame. Barret Jackman buried a slap shot at the 14:18 mark for his first goal of the season, giving St. Louis a two goal lead.
The highlight of the first period was not the scoring, but the defense. The Islanders found themselves on a four on three power play after a Jori Lehtera hooking minor that the Blues killed routinely.
The Islanders battled well in the second period. At the 16:03 mark, Kyle Okposo won a face-off that trickled back to John Tavares. Tavares drifted across the slot and threw the puck at the goal beating Jake Allen through the five-hole for his 12th goal of the year.
With five seconds left in the second period, the Isles scored again off of a face-off. Mikhail Grabovski got the puck from Frans Nielsen and beat Jake Allen to tie things at two heading into the second intermission. New York wore out Allen in the period, tallying 14 shots on net.
The Blues regained the lead early in the third period with a goal in transition. T.J. Oshie fired a wrist shot off of the blocker of Jaroslav Halak. Alex Steen was in the right place at the right time as the rebound bounced right to him. Steen wristed the puck by Halak for the second time in the game for his seventh goal of the season.
St. Louis extended the lead with under five minutes to play in regulation. Patrik Berglund was fighting for the puck against the glass behind the net, backhanded the puck to a slicing T.J. Oshie, and Oshie beat Halak to give the Blues a 4-2 lead.
The Blues tacked on a fifth goal with 2:12 left in regulation. While on the power play, David Backes delivered a nice pass to Paul Stastny for an easy tap-in goal. Shortly after the goal, Kyle Okposo beat Allen to make it 5-3.
The Isles opted to go with an extra attacker and pull Halak with just over one minute to go. Jaden Schwartz slapped at the puck one-handed and scored the Blues’ sixth goal of the night on an empty-netter from the blue-line.
For the second time in the last week, the Blues outdueled the Islanders. For the second time in the last week, the Blues dropped six goals on the Islanders. And, for the second time in the last week, Jaroslav Halak would be the loser against a team he played for last season.
Alex Steen had possibly his best game of the season, tallying two goals and an assist. T.J. Oshie also tallied three points (1 goal, 2 assists), and Barret Jackman was good for a goal and an assist. Jake Allen stopped 25 of the 28 shots he faced.
The Islanders drop to 19-10-0, but remain only one point back of Pittsburgh in the Metropolitan Division at 38 points. The Blues improve to 19-8-2 with the win, and sit one point behind the Chicago Blackhawks at 40 points. The Blues head to Colorado Saturday to take on the Avalanche in a late game. That game starts at 9 PM CST and can be seen on FS-MW or heard on KMOX 1120.