The St. Louis Blues' seven-game winning streak went up in flames Wednesday night.
Jakub Voracek scored on a pair of breakaways as the Columbus Blue Jackets tied a franchise record for goals on the way to an 8-1 victory -- routing a team that had allowed just four goals in its last six games.
Voracek's second breakaway goal came at 3:46 of the second period and chased goalie Jaroslav Halak, who came in with three shutouts in his last five starts. It gave the Jackets a 4-0 lead, a huge margin for the only team that had not scored more than three goals in any game this season.
"We did a good job of coming out of the gate and setting the tone of the game," coach Scott Arniel said. "It was a big win over a divisional opponent. We earned our two points."
Chris Clark also had two goals and Rick Nash, R.J. Umberger and Antoine Vermette each added a goal and an assist for Columbus, which set a franchise record for largest margin of victory while winning for the eighth time in 11 games.
"It wasn't as big for me as it was for some players who were struggling to score goals," Arniel said of matching the team record for goals. "Lines got rewarded for hard work. We've had individuals and lines that were working, getting chances and not getting the rewards from it. Tonight their hard work paid off. We stuck to what we wanted to do (offensively)."
Derick Brassard added a career-high three assists and Kyle Wilson and Nikita Filatov each had a career-best two. Samuel Pahlsson also had two assists and Jared Boll had a goal. The eight goals were also the most scored by any team in a game this season, and the seven-goal margin of victory was also a League season-high.
Every line Arniel sent seemed better than the previous one.
"I got through every line two times each, and every line went after them and spent some time in their end of the rink," Arniel said. (We) got on the forecheck, got (scoring) opportunities, got zone time. For the first four minutes we were hardly in our end of the rink. That's the style (St. Louis) likes to play and we tried to turn it the other way, and I think we did a good job of coming out of the gate and setting the tone of the game
Steve Mason made 29 saves for Columbus, allowing only B.J. Crombeen's second-period goal.
"Bottom line is, we understand that we can't play that way," St. Louis coach Davis Payne said.
The Blues not only lost the game, but also saw forward T.J. Oshie leave with an apparent left leg injury in the third period. He got tangled up with Pahlsson in a scrum and Pahlsson fell on top of Oshie, who was helped off and didn't return.
The Blue Jackets got goals by Voracek, Boll and Nash to grab a 3-0 lead before the game was 17 minutes old. Nash stole a pass and sent Voracek in for his first breakaway goal at 6:49, Boll surprised Halak at 10:30 with a backhander that hit the goaltender's left skate and caromed into the net, and Nash capped a Columbus barrage by one-timing Brassard's pass into the net at 16:36.
Voracek sent Halak to the bench with his second breakaway goal. But after Crombeen scored at 10:59, Clark beat Ty Conklin 11 seconds later and Umberger beat him with a one-timer from the slot at 13:37.
"It was fun tonight," Voracek said. "It was good to finally score more than three goals in a game. I think we played good from the first minute. Everything went in today, and I think we deserve it. All four lines were scoring goals today, which is important. I hope we are going to be the same way Friday."
Clark and Vermette scored 18 seconds apart in the first two minutes of the third period, giving the Jackets eight goals against a team that had allowed just 17 in its first 12 games.
"We didn't handle pressure, we spent too much time in our own zone," Payne said. "We played a different game than is effective for us as far as supporting the puck, as far as moving the puck with a vertical intention. Columbus had a lot of the space around the puck all night long. They won the races to loose ones, they won the races to support and they won a lot of the battle space areas we pride ourselves on."
Material from team media and wire services was used in this report