ST. PAUL, Minn. -
Marco Sturm scored the game-winning goal at 11:02 of the third period, his fourth goal as a Bruin, to help lead Boston to a 3-2 win over the Minnesota Wild on Thursday night in front of a sell out crowd at the Xcel Energy Center. Andrew Raycroft shined in goal, making 29 saves and helping his team snap a three-game losing streak. Patrice Bergeron
and Sergei Samsonov each scored for the Bruins in the win.
"A good road game means you play smart, you play hard, and you play simple," said Head Coach Mike Sullivan. "You force teams to have to work and make plays to gain opportunities. I thought we did a pretty good job of that tonight. I think the guys worked for the breaks they got. They put the puck to the net and skated hard to the net. We've been preaching that to our guys all year. The front of the net is a tough area of the rink to defend. You watch goals around the league and more often than not it's from just getting the puck to the net."
The Wild got on the board first at 10:30 of the first, scoring 11 seconds into a power play on a goal by former Bruin Brian Rolston
for the 1-0 lead.
Boston responded quickly and knotted the score at 1-1 on a goal by Patrice Bergeron
. Brian Leetch dumped the puck into Minnesota's zone on what looked to be a routine play. Minnesota goalie Manny Fernandez, who'd gone behind the net to play the puck, couldn't get set between the pipes in time to stop Patrice Bergeron
The Bruins carried their momentum into the second period and took a 2-1 lead with a goal at 5:30. Sergei Samsonov deflected a Tom Fitzgerald shot past Manny Fernandez for his team-leading 13th goal of the season. Alex Zhamnov started the play from the corner and was credited with the other assist.
With a minute and a half left in the period, Minnesota tallied another power play goal to make it 2-2. Kurtis Foster sent the puck in from the slot, Raycroft made the initial save, but Randy Robitaille picked up the loose puck and scored the equalizer.
The Bruins broke the tie at 11:02 of the third for a 3-2 lead. Brad Boyes picked up the puck and sent it over to David Tanabe at the point. Tanabe's shot was deflected in front of the net by Marco Sturm, his 10th goal of the year. Andrew Raycroft made 29 saves on the night, helping to seal the 3-2 final for Boston.
"It's easier to have energy when you're getting breaks on goals for you and not against you," said Raycroft. "That's how we have to score goals and win games. We need to score those ugly ones. It feels good to get the win tonight. It's a lot more fun to play with a lead than it is to play down. It's definitely a lot more fun to play hockey when you have a lead."
The Bruins will head out to Calgary to play the Flames on Saturday night at 10:00 p.m.