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game recap

Vladimir Tarasenko lifts Blues past Islanders

Forward scores two goals to help St. Louis win fourth straight

by Louie Korac / NHL.com Correspondent

ST. LOUIS -- Vladimir Tarasenko scored two goals, and the St. Louis Blues extended their win streak to four games with a 4-3 victory against the New York Islanders at Scottrade Center on Saturday. 

Alexander Steen had a goal and an assist, and Carter Hutton made 21 saves for St. Louis (35-27-5)..

The Blues were without center Paul Stastny (illness) and defenseman Colton Parayko (undisclosed), but held a 4-1 lead after two periods and hung on in the third.

 

WATCH: All Islanders vs. Blues highlights

 

"In my eyes, that was a character win," Blues coach Mike Yeo said. "We said that before the game that it was going to be a character game. I was confident with the character in our locker room that guys would recognize that and we would respond."

New York (32-24-11) finished a franchise-long nine-game road trip 5-3-1 and fell out of the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference by one point when the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 in overtime on Saturday. 

Thomas Greiss allowed four goals on 18 shots and was replaced by Jean-Francois Berube to start the third period. Berube made six saves.

"I think all we can do is keep chucking forward," Islanders captain John Tavares said. "We're still in a good spot. We know we're right there battling for that last wild card. There's going to be some games where you don't get the results and you've just to keep moving forward." 

Tarasenko put the Blues ahead 1-0 with a power-play goal at 7:23 of the first period. 

Video: NYI@STL: Tarasenko pots Schwartz's 200th NHL point

The Islanders thought they tied it at 11:31 of the first on a power-play goal by Andrew Ladd, but the Blues challenged New York was offside and the goal was overturned because Jason Chimera was in ahead of the play. 

Steen gave the Blues a 2-0 lead at 4:58 of the second period, but Brock Nelson made it 2-1 at 11:37. 

Tarasenko scored his second of the game at 15:28 of the second to make it 3-1, and Patrik Berglund gave the Blues a 4-1 lead at 18:06. 

"[Tarasenko's] one of the best shooters in the League," Islanders left wing Anders Lee said. "He doesn't need much space to get a shot off, and obviously it was apparent tonight he didn't need it at all. He snapped a couple home."

Anthony Beauvillier's slap shot from the high slot caromed off Hutton's glove at 2:11 of the third to make it 4-2. Nick Leddy scored a power-play goal and Berube pulled for a 6-on-4 situation with 1:29 remaining to make it 4-3.

Video: NYI@STL: Nelson goes top shelf for Isles' first goal

 

Goal of the game

The Islanders were buzzing down 2-1, but Tarasenko's quick-release caught Greiss off-guard and restored the Blues' two-goal lead in the second.

"They had momentum and I couldn't help but smile on the bench because that's what you need at that time," Yeo said.

Video: NYI@STL: Tarasenko whips home his second goal

 
Save of the game

Berube kept it a 4-2 game with a right skate save on Berglund 3:59 into the third period.

 

Highlight of the game

Berglund's goal came off a hustle play by Magnus Paajarvi to keep a puck alive in the offensive zone. Paajarvi got it down low to David Perron, who found Berglund in the slot for a backhand shot past Greiss.

Video: NYI@STL: Berglund nets nifty backhand to pad lead

 

Unsung performance of the game

Berglund stepped up with Stastny unavailable. He was assigned to shut down Tavares, which he did, and won 14 of 19 faceoffs (74 percent).

 

They said it

"That was a good win. Obviously it starts with goaltending, solid goaltending again. We kept it tight for the most part. I think towards the end there, we took our foot off the gas a little much and gave them some opportunities, but all in all, those are big points for us." -- Blues forward Alexander Steen

 

Video: NYI@STL: Steen collects deflected pass, beats Greiss

 

"I think this is how successful [our] team is supposed to be. Of course we miss those guys, they're great players, the team effort was what we got here and support for each other." -- Blues right wing Vladimir Tarasenko on winning without Paul Stastny and Colton Parayko

 

Need to know

Blues defenseman Jordan Schmaltz played in his second NHL game with Parayko out, and Nail Yakupov stepped in for Stastny. ... Islanders defenseman and St. Louis native Scott Mayfield, who had an assist, played an NHL game in his hometown for the first time.

 

What's next

Islanders: Host the Carolina Hurricanes on Monday (7:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, NHL.TV)

Blues: At the Los Angeles Kings on Monday (10 p.m. ET; SNE, SNO, FS-W, FS-MW, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Tarasenko's two-goal night leads Blues to 4-3 win

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