– Photo by Scott Rovak/NHLI via Getty Images
A strong start for the Blues and a late goal helped St. Louis to victory against the Winnipeg Jets 5-4.
The Blues have now scored 11 goals in the past two games this season.
Jackman’s second goal of the season and first since Dec. 11, 2014 helped give the Blues two points in the standings
With the win, St. Louis improves to 42-19-5 with 89 points. The Blues are four points behind the division-leading Nashville Predators and three points ahead of the Chicago Blackhawks.
The Blues are now just 10 wins behind their total wins last season.
In the first period, Winnipeg jumped out to a one-goal lead with 11:10 remaining in the first period. Andrew Ladd lifted the puck into the offensive zone, and Jori Lehtera batted it out of the air. Unfortunately for St. Louis, the puck fell straight to Michael Frolik who beat Brian Elliott low for his 16th tally of the season.
St. Louis wasted little time as the NHL’s third best power play went to work.
Alex Pietrangelo dropped the puck back to Jaden Schwartz, who carried it to the middle of the attacking zone. Pietrangelo moved to the front of the net and provided a screen as Schwartz scored to tie the game at one.
Schwartz is now second on the team with 23 goals behind Vladamir Tarasenko.
Despite the 1-1 game, both teams failed to apply pressure in the offensive zone, as they combined for just 10 shots on goal.
It took just :31 for St. Louis to get its first lead of the game. Lehtera took a shot from the blue line that the Jets blocked down. Lehtera picked the puck back up and sent a pass to the right dot. Tarasenko received the pass and scored on Michael Hutchinson for his team-leading 33rd goal of the season.
St. Louis added to its lead as Steve Ott netted his third of the season with assists from David Backes and Ryan Reaves to make it 3-1 Blues.
Ott has not had fewer than nine goals in a single season since 2006 when he played just 19 games for the Dallas Stars.
The goals kept coming for St. Louis as Lehtera again carried the puck into the offensive zone. Lehtera passed it to Pietrangelo in the high slot who sent it to Schwartz who one-timed a pass back Lehtera. Lehtera redirected the pass into the net making it 4-1 with 8:51 remaining in the second period.
The Jets pulled Hutchinson from in between the pipes after allowing four goals on just seven shots as Ondrej Pavelec came in to the game.
After two periods of play, the Blues held a three-goal lead, but Winnipeg cut St. Louis’s lead to two as captain Andrew Ladd capitalized on Robert Bortuzzo failure to clear the puck in front of the net on the penalty kill. Ladd’s 23rd goal made it 4-2 with over 18 minutes left in regulation.
Just nine seconds later, the Jets cut the lead to one as Adam Lowry fell to his knees and passed to Lee Stempniak. Stempniak shot and scored off the post past Elliott cutting the lead to just one with over 18 minutes still left in regulation.
The St. Louis lead evaporated as Blake Wheeler scored from the assist from Tyler Myers. The goal tied the game at four, headed into the final minutes of the third period.
With 1:03 remaining in the third period, St. Louis found an unlikely hero in Barret Jackman. Jackman’s attempted dump in took a strange bounce and beat Pavelec to give St. Louis the victory.
Following the win, St. Louis takes on the Philadelphia Flyers for the second time in four games. The game will take place Thursday, March 12 at 7 p.m. CT.