EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) _ Sloppy play by the Edmonton Oilers gave the
Columbus Blue Jackets some great scoring chances. Ty Conklin was there in goal
to constantly bail them out.
Conklin stopped 21 shots, and Ethan Moreau scored the winner with 5:23 left
of the third period as the Oilers beat the Blue Jackets 3-2 Tuesday night.
The Oilers moved within four points of the final playoff spot in the Western
``It was a big win for our team and it was a complete effort,'' Conklin
Conklin made 10 saves in the second period, including one on a point-blank
opportunity by Columbus defenseman Anders Eriksson and another on rookie
He also stopped Rick Nash on a breakaway late in the period and then denied
Andrew Cassels on another breakaway in the closing minutes of the third.
``Conks makes a great save on Nash who's in all alone in the second period
and then a pretty good save on Cassels,'' Oilers coach Craig MacTavish said.
``We made some mistakes at the blue line that we got away with. Real good,
solid goaltending. Ty played very well.''
With the game tied 2-2, Steve Staios was stopped on a breakaway but Moreau
picked up the rebound and beat Marc Denis for his 18th of the season, a career
``They made us work harder in this game then we had to in the last game,''
said Moreau, referring to Edmonton's 3-1 win over Ottawa on Sunday.
The winning goal came just 1:40 after Cassels tied it for the Blue Jackets
with his 200th NHL goal.
Georges Laraque and Marc-Andre Bergeron also scored for the Oilers, who have
points in 13 of 14 games.
``I've never felt this good in my entire career,'' said Laraque, who scored
all six of his goals this season in the past 21 games.
Alexander Svitov had the other Columbus goal, and Denis made 24 saves.
``It's the same old story _ another one-goal loss,'' Blue Jackets interim
coach Gerard Gallant said. ``We played pretty well. A pretty good team we
played against, a desperate team. They beat us again in the third.
``It's disappointing, but it's the same old story.''
There was little hitting in the game, with the first penalty being called at
16:39 of the second period when Moreau was called for cross-checking.
Svitov opened the scoring 3:17 in when he picked up a rebound in front of
the crease and slipped the puck low on Conklin's stick side.
Bergeron tied it 1-1 on a play that was reviewed by the video goal judge.
Ryan Smyth sent a pass toward the goal and Bergeron, who skated up the middle
of the ice from his own zone, got a piece of the puck, and bounced it just over
the goal-line behind Denis.
Laraque scored 2:41 into the third period.