Stempniak gave the Blues some insurance when he scored early in
the third period. Rucinsky, who scored twice on the day, then
closed the door with an empty net goal with 4 seconds left as the
Blues snapped a three-game losing skid by beating the Edmonton
Oilers 5-3 Sunday afternoon.
The Blues have made a habit of falling behind by two or more
goals, then battling back. Blues forward Keith Tkachuk, for one,
did not mind being on the other end.
"We've come back a lot," Tkachuk said. "But we've shot
ourselves too much in the foot. It's nice playing a 5-on-5 and not
playing catch-up for a change.
Stempniak said that he noticed a difference in the Blues' style
"We played with desperation all afternoon," said Stempniak,
who also had an assist. "In the past, we'd get down by a couple of
goals and then come out and play with a lot desperation and
urgency. We're a much better team when we do that all game and we
showed it today."
Rookie Brad Winchester scored twice for the Oilers. Fernando
Pisani had the other Edmonton goal.
St. Louis led 3-2 early in the third period when Stempniak gave
the Blues some insurance. He took a pass from Tkachuk, skated down
left wing and lifted a backhander over Edmonton goalie Jussi
"I knew there was pressure coming from the back," Stempniak
said. "I just wanted to use a boost off of him and get a shot"
Edmonton coach Craig MacTavish said that goal was a
"That fourth goal hurt us getting back in the game, and we've
seemingly done that a lot this year," MacTavish said.
"The game isn't rocket science. It's a simple game; you get it
in deep, you don't make mistakes and you support one another."
Pisani did cut the advantage in half with a power-play goal with
3:32 remaining, but Rucinsky put the game away with his empty net
The Blues briefly had a two-goal advantage in the second period.
Rucinsky gave the Blues a 2-1 lead when he beat Markkanen with a
wrist shot from the left circle at the 2-minute mark. McClement
made it 3-1 when he swatted home the rebound of Eric Brewer's shot
at 18:39 of the period.
But Winchester got the Oilers back in it before the period was
over with his second goal. Winchester broke into the St. Louis zone
and surprised Sanford, who was screened by Brewer, with a wrist
shot from between the circles with 4.6 seconds left.
A similar event occurred in the first period when Salvador gave
the Blues a 1-0 advantage on a slap shot from the left point at the
14:03 mark. Just 42 seconds later, Winchester tied the game 1-1 off
a scramble for a loose puck in front of Sanford.
Game Notes St. Louis begins a five-game road trip starting in Calgary
on Tuesday night and will not return to the Scottrade Center until
Nov. 25. ... Winchester has three goals in his last four games. ...
Rucinsky's first goal was his first since Oct. 17. ... Blues
defenseman Matt Walker left the game with a groin strain and did
Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press
Arena: Scottrade Center Location: Saint Louis, Missouri
Referees: Paul Devorski, Greg Kimmerly Linesmen: Lonnie Cameron, Brad Lazarowich
Attendance: 9,214 (48.1% full)
Team Stat Comparison
Power Play Goals
Power Play Opportunities
Shots on Goal
Bryce Salvador (2)
Assists: Lee Stempniak, Petr Cajanek
Brad Winchester (2)
Assists: Patrick Thoresen, Marty Reasoner
Martin Rucinsky (4)
Assist: Bill Guerin
Jay McClement (1)
Assists: Eric Brewer, Radek Dvorak
Brad Winchester (3)
Assist: Shawn Horcoff
Lee Stempniak (8)
Assists: Keith Tkachuk, Eric Brewer
Fernando Pisani (3)
(Power Play) Assists: Daniel Tjarnqvist, Shawn Horcoff