March 13, 2018 / 4:53 AM / 5 days ago

Blues top Ducks 4-2 in key battle for playoff position

Four players scored a goal each and Jake Allen made 20 saves for just his fourth win in 21 games Monday night as the St. Louis Blues dumped the Anaheim Ducks 4-2 in a matchup of Western Conference playoff hopefuls at Honda Center in Anaheim.

Patrik Berglund gave St. Louis valuable insurance with his ninth goal at 11:28 of the third period, taking a pass in the high slot from Kyle Brodziak and wiring a wrister by John Gibson. It was the second straight win for the Blues, who moved within a point of Colorado for the conference’s last playoff spot, three days before they host the Avalanche.

Derek Grant pulled the Ducks within a marker at 6:15 with his ninth goal, deflecting a Chris Kelly shot, but Anaheim couldn’t avoid its third straight loss. It stayed at 80 points, good for third in the Pacific Division, after going 7-1-1 in its previous nine games.

After earning a slight territorial edge in the first period, St. Louis cashed it in at 17:30. Drop passes from Brayden Schenn and Alex Pietrangelo found Robert Bortuzzo, who snapped a shot past the stick of Gibson for his third goal of the season.

Ivan Barbashev made it 2-0 at 3:00 of the second period by being in the right place at the right time. Gibson stopped the initial shot by Nikita Soshnikov, but Barbashev pounced on the rebound at the goalmouth and shoveled it into a yawning cage.

Corey Perry brought Anaheim within 2-1 on his 15th goal at 4:17. Ryan Getzlaf teed him up at the right post with a great pass from the left circle, and Allen had no chance.

But the Blues responded with Vladimir Sobotka’s 10th goal of the season at 16:50. Jordan Schmaltz found him with a pass from the right point, and Sobotka’s spinning wrister at the left post caromed off Gibson’s left pad and trickled over the goal line.

Gibson finished with 19 saves on 23 shots.

—Field Level Media

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