Blue Jackets’ losing streak reaches 5 after 4-2 loss to Capitals

WASHINGTON (AP) — Fourth-line center Jay Beagle put Washington ahead for good with his 50th career goal, and the Capitals continued their dominance against the Columbus Blue Jackets with a 4-2 victory on Friday night.

Evgeny Kuznetsov and Lars Eller each had a goal and an assist as Washington swept a home-and-home with Columbus and won its sixth straight against the Blue Jackets dating to last season. John Carlson also scored and Braden Holtby made 35 saves.

The Metropolitan Division leaders won for the fourth time in six games despite being outshot 37-17 by the visitors.

Pierre Luc-Dubois and Artemi Panarin scored for the Blue Jackets, who have lost five straight. Columbus’ struggles on the penalty kill continued with Eller’s power-play goal, marking a seventh straight game allowing at least one.

Columbus quickly answered each of Washington’s first two goals, but the Capitals grabbed control over a 90-second stretch of the second period.

Beagle got it started with the sixth goal of his 10th NHL season. He shoveled in the Chandler Stephenson rebound off Sergei Bobrovsky‘s pads to put Washington up 3-2 with 15:22 left in the period.

Then Eller snuck a slap shot inside Bobrovsky’s near post as Washington caught Columbus taking a chance on a short-handed break.

Washington went without a shot for the rest of the period, but escaped with its 4-2 lead intact, thanks partly to defenseman Matt Niskanen‘s goal-line block on a penalty kill inside the final minute.

NOTES: Columbus D Zach Werenski staggered off the ice late in the second after he appeared to get kicked accidentally in the thigh or groin by Washington’s T.J. Oshie. Werenski returned in the third. … Capitals LW Andre Burakovsky was a healthy scratch. He has a cumulative plus-minus rating of minus-4 over the last five games. … The United Arab Emirates women’s national hockey team was honored on the ice prior to the opening faceoff. … Washington acquired RW Adam Chapie and LW Joe Whitney from the New York Rangers in exchange for C John Albert and D Hubert Labrie. Chapie and Whitney will report to Hershey of the AHL.


Blue Jackets: Host New Jersey on Saturday.

Capitals: Host Detroit on Sunday.