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Columbus Blue Jackets 4, Chicago Blackhawks 1 FINAL

NHL.com @NHL

CHICAGO (AP) -- It took the Columbus Blue Jackets nearly half the season to win their first road game.

Manny Malhotra and Rick Nash scored 1:26 apart early in the third period Friday night, sending the Blue Jackets to a 4-1 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks.

Columbus improved to 1-11-1-2 away from home and won in Chicago for the first time in eight games since entering the NHL in 2000-01.

"It was huge," Nash said. "After going all that time, it's a huge weight off the back. We've just got to keep doing more of it.

"We've talked about it before every single road game. And to actually do it and not have you guys come ask us why we're not doing it is kind of relieving."

David Vyborny scored twice for the Blue Jackets, who ended a six-game losing skid and nine-game winless streak. His second goal was into an empty net with 1:59 left.

Nash's 22nd goal moved him one ahead of Atlanta's Ilya Kovalchuk for the league lead.

"I just thought we played it 60 minutes really solid," Blue Jackets coach and general manager Doug McLean said. "The second goal was a huge one, the third goal was big. They're all big when we're having trouble scoring like we have, but we played really sound tonight."

Columbus entered having scored just five goals in its previous four games. It was only the second time in the last 11 games the Blue Jackets scored as many as three goals.

Scott Nichol scored for the struggling Blackhawks, who have won just two of their last 22 games (2-13-4-3).

"The first couple of shifts (of the third period) we overhandled the puck," Chicago coach Brian Sutter said. "We gave up the puck about five times. No matter who you play, it's going to kill you."

Columbus goalie Fred Brathwaite stopped 30 shots. Chicago's Michael Leighton blocked 29.

Nichol opened the scoring with 6:27 left in the first period when he slid in a loose rebound of Mark Bell's shot.

Vyborny tied it at 8:23 of the second. He circled off the right wing boards, skated unchecked across the slot and lifted a backhander over Leighton's glove.

Malhotra fired in a loose rebound from 15 feet at 2:26 of the third to give Columbus a 2-1 lead. Leighton stopped Derrick Walser's first shot, but Walser slipped the rebound across the crease to Malhotra, who was wide open.

Nash pounced on a rebound at the edge of the crease 1:26 later to give the Blue Jackets a 3-1 advantage.

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