Nash's Shootout Goal Gives Columbus A 4-3 Win
Vyborny and Hrdina Each Score A Goal And Add An Assist
Nash scored a highlight-reel goal in the shootout and Marc Denis stopped all three shots he faced as the Columbus Blue Jackets posted a 4-3 victory over the Blues, who have lost nine straight.
Entering with eight consecutive setbacks, St. Louis was hoping history would repeat itself on Friday. The Blues dropped 11 in a row from October 20-November 12 before halting the slide with a 2-0 triumph over the Blue Jackets on November 16 at Nationwide Arena.
Things were going according to plan after two periods as Mike Sillinger and rookie defenseman Dennis Wideman netted shorthanded goals in the middle session to provide St. Louis with a 3-2 lead. The Blues entered the contest with just three shorthanded tallies all season.
However, Jan Hrdina scored less than seven minutes into the third to forge a tie. After an exciting but scoreless overtime, the game went to a shootout, a format in which the Blues had won once in four previous tries.
Dean McAmmond, who opened the scoring with 6:18 to go in the first period, had St. Louis' first chance, but his shot glanced off Denis' left shoulder and wide. Curtis Sanford, who replaced an injured Jason Bacashihua late in the third period, made a glove save on rookie Jaroslav Balastik, keeping the shootout even.
Denis stopped Doug Weight's shot to open the second round, setting the stage for Nash. The co-winner of the 2004 Maurice Richard Trophy who had two shots but no points prior to the shootout, Nash made several dekes before sliding the puck around Sanford with just one hand on his stick, giving Columbus the edge.
Sillinger, whose shorthanded tally extended his goal-scoring streak to four games, was denied by Denis on St. Louis' final opportunity, sealing the win.
Nikolai Zherdev and David Vyborny scored goals for the Blue Jackets, who have won five of their last seven.
Bacashihua stopped 26 shots for St. Louis before leaving with an apparent left wrist injury after being crashed into by Dan Fritsche with 96 seconds to go in the third.