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Post Game: Blue Jackets 3, Lightning 2

Friday, 04.11.2014 / 9:45 PM / News
By Rob Mixer  - BlueJackets.com
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Post Game: Blue Jackets 3, Lightning 2
The Blue Jackets rallied in the third period, but came up one goal short in a 3-2 loss to the Lightning in Tampa.

 

LIGHTNING 3 | BLUE JACKETS 2
TAMPA BAY TIMES FORUM
TAMPA, FL




The Blue Jackets, with business still to take care of, ran into a Lightning team in the same situation tonight in Tampa. They fell behind and then tied it up in the second period, but a pair of late second period goals put them in a big hole after two periods.

Eric Brewer, usually known as a stay-at-home blue liner, scored twice in a small window to turn a tie game into a 3-1 lead for the Lightning. Curtis McElhinney, starting in place of Sergei Bobrovsky (who will play Saturday’s regular season finale in Florida), was solid in the first period but fought the puck in the second, but he was far from the crux of the Jackets’ struggles.

Discipline was a problem in the middle frame, as the Jackets started the second period with three minor penalties in less than five minutes, giving the Lightning power play more than its fair share of ice time. They took advantage on the first one, with Ondrej Palat sliding a loose puck through McElhinney’s pads for a 1-0 lead - but it wouldn’t stay that way for long.

Boone Jenner scored his 16th of the season (power play) a few minutes later, tying the game and tying Rick Nash’s single-season franchise record for goals scored by a rookie. With one game left in the regular season, it’s safe to say Jenner has an opportunity to break the record.

Anyway, back to the game.

Turnovers were an issue for the Jackets and they couldn’t sustain much time in the Tampa zone, which led to more time spent defending and less opportunity to get their forecheck going. Columbus closed within 3-2 late in the third on a goal from David Savard, and despite some chances in the final minute, they were unable to find the equalizer tonight. 

"It's tough," Jenner said. "We had a pretty good push (in the second period) but (Gudlevskis) played pretty well. He made some big stops at key times for them."

"You have to give them credit," Corey Tropp said. "They played pretty well. But we also had our chances and didn't finish them."




Brewer’s pair of goals in the second period changed the game, and the Jackets never really recovered after that.



1. KRISTERS GUDLEVSKIS (TB)
Tip your cap to the young netminder tonight; he made 36 saves to earn the victory in his NHL debut. 

2. BOONE JENNER (CBJ)
Jenner was rambonxious all night long, getting in on the forecheck and he scored what was a big goal in the second period. He also recorded an assist on Savard's goal.

3. JACK JOHNSON (CBJ)
Aside from his assist, Johnson was a physical presence tonight and laid a huge hit on Lightning rookie Ondrej Palat in the third period. 




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