(AP Photo/ The Canadian Press, Nathan Denette)
The St. Louis Blues left Toronto with another win in their pockets and yet another step closer to the President’s Trophy. The 5 to 3 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs left the Leafs with their sixth loss in a row.
Despite the final result, the Leafs would get on the board first when Joffery Lupul scored on a power play to give Toronto a one goal lead. The Blues quickly responded with TJ Oshie netting one, and David Backes capitalizing on a power play opportunity with just 33 seconds left in the first period. The Blues sat on a 2 to 1 lead after one.
Backes registered his second goal of the night, this one on even strength, when he beat goaltender Johnathan Bernier five hole. Alexander Steen gave the Blues the 4 to 1 lead in the second period when his backhand beat Bernier up high.
The third period became very tense when the Leafs began to make a push for a comeback. Toronto scored two goals to cut the lead in the half with the help of goals scored by Carl Gunnarsson and James van Riemsdyk. The Blues then locked down defensively and would not give up anymore goals and would add one more of their own to solidify the win.
David Backes scored the empty net goal in the third period to give the Blues the win and his second hat trick of his career. The Blues are standing just two points ahead of the San Jose Sharks for the first seed in the Western Conference, and one point ahead of the Boston Bruins for the top seed in the NHL. Every point counts, and every game is a must win, in these games down the stretch and coming into the playoffs.
The Blues head back home to face-off against Minnesota on Thursday, March 27th, at 7PM (CST).