Blues beat Ducks 2-1 in OT on Berglund’s game-winner
ANAHEIM, Calif.– The St. Louis Blues finally put an end to their struggles at The Honda Center.
Patrik Berglund’s second goal of the game, 51 seconds into overtime, lifted the Blues to a 2-1 victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Sunday night. It was St. Louis’ first win in 11 visits to Anaheim.
Carter Hutton stopped 22 shots for his second win in two nights and Berglund scored his ninth goal in the last 14 games. The Blues got their first win in Anaheim since Oct. 17, 2009, going 0-9-1 in 10 visits since.
In the extra period, Jaden Schwartz found Berglund speeding past Ryan Getzlaf and into the slot, where he was able to chip the puck high over goalie John Gibson.
“I think he made a great decision to leave the zone and regroup and get some speed going,” Berglund said. “Great play by him. I just kind of went straight towards the net.”
Berglund said there was no real plan in overtime, but Blues coach Ken Hitchcock said the plan was simply to ride the hot hand.
“He wouldn’t have played that early (in overtime), but when the guy is playing that well you have to keep playing him,” Hitchcock said. “He deserved it.”
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Rickard Rakell scored for Anaheim and Gibson made 24 saves as the Ducks fell to 1-8 in overtime.
“There was an extra point there for us,” Ducks coach Randy Carlyle said. “Tonight I thought we had a decent first, we were kind of flat in the second, and got reset and refocused in the third. It’s a tough break in overtime. We missed an assignment, but we’ll move on.”
The game was largely dominated by stellar goaltending and there were few chances to be had for either team. Hutton made back-to-back starts for the first time this season and has played in the last five, seeing the bulk of the time in St. Louis’s net as Jake Allen continues to struggle.
“Since after Christmas I’ve been seeing the puck well,” Hutton said. “I’ve been working on battling and competing to find pucks while staying on my feet as long as possible. I work hard when I’m not playing. I visualize pucks and work on my tracking.”
Rakell tied the game at 1-1 at 5:11 of the third period when he beat Hutton to a rebound and swept it past him.
Berglund had given the Blues a 1-0 lead with 9:57 left in the second, chipping a backhand past Gibson at a sharp angle.
“We’ve played a lot of hockey and we’re going to continue playing a lot of hockey for the next few weeks. It’s a grind,” Ducks defenseman Kevin Bieksa said. “The objective is to get points every night. We’d like two, but it’s nice to get one.”
NOTES: Rakell played in his 200th NHL game. His goal was the 18th in just 35 games this season. … St. Louis D Carl Gunnarsson missed his sixth straight game … Berglund scored in the Blues’ last win in Anaheim in 2009, a 5-0 win.
Blues: Host Ottawa on Tuesday night.
Ducks: Host Tampa Bay on Tuesday night.