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Blue Jackets avoid sweep by Penguins with Game 4 win

Columbus scores five goals to extend Eastern Conference First Round series

by Craig Merz / NHL.com Correspondent

COLUMBUS -- The Columbus Blue Jackets defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins 5-4 in Game 4 to avoid being swept out of the Eastern Conference First Round at Nationwide Arena on Tuesday.

The Penguins lead the best-of-7 series 3-1 with Game 5 at Pittsburgh on Thursday.

Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella said the goal Tuesday was simple.

"I just wanted them to see what it was like to win a playoff game with this team together," he said. "They accomplished that."

 

[WATCH: All Blue Jackets vs. Penguins highlights | RELATED: Complete Columbus vs. Pittsburgh series coverage]

 

William Karlsson, Boone Jenner and Markus Nutivaara each had a goal and an assist for the Blue Jackets. Jack Johnson and Josh Anderson scored, Brandon Saad had two assists, and Sergei Bobrovsky made 27 saves.

Columbus won a playoff game in regulation for the first time; it is 3-11 in its history, with all of the wins against Pittsburgh.

Jake Guentzel scored a shorthanded goal while Pittsburgh had an extra attacker to make it 5-4 with 28 seconds left in the third period, but the Penguins did not have another shot.

Video: PIT@CBJ, Gm4: Johnson tallies off Crosby's skate

"You earn your bounces," Pittsburgh captain Sidney Crosby said. "They were better. They earned the win. We didn't have the desperation we needed to win the game."

Columbus built a 3-0 lead 4:48 into the second period. Pittsburgh pulled within 3-2 when Patric Hornqvist and Ron Hainsey scored. Phil Kessel had two assists, and Marc-Andre Fleury made 29 saves.

Karlsson made it 4-2 on a wraparound off his shot 27 seconds into the third period.

"That was a big goal by Karlsson. That boosted our play," Jenner said.

Video: PIT@CBJ, Gm4: Nutivaara tallies in first playoff game

Tom Kuhnhackl scored for the Penguins at 2:10 of the third to make it 4-3, but Jenner tapped in a shot by Saad at 5:37 for a 5-3 lead.

Nutivaara, a rookie defenseman playing his first Stanley Cup Playoff game, made it 3-0 at 4:48 of the second period when he scored off a rebound of a Jenner shot.

Hornqvist scored a power-play goal at 6:43 to make it 3-1, and Hainsey, a veteran of 907 regular-season games, got his first goal in his fourth playoff game, using a screen by Bryan Rust to score from a low angle at 16:24.

 

Goal of the game

Karlsson persevered in scoring the fourth goal for the Blue Jackets, taking the initial shot on the right side and coming around the net to beat Fleury to the left post.

Video: PIT@CBJ, Gm4: Karlsson scores from a sharp angle

 

Save of the game

Bobrovsky made a point-blank save on Hainsey coming down the slot with 6:35 left in the third period.

Video: PIT@CBJ, Gm4: Bobrovsky extends pad to rob Hainsey

 

Unsung performance of the game

Blue Jackets defenseman Kyle Quincey was a healthy scratch the first three games but made an early impact with a jarring hit on Guentzel in the first period. Quincey had an assist, four hits, four blocks and was plus-1 playing 20:48.

 

Highlight of the game

Guentzel scored with a shot from the high slot while everyone was scrambling around him in the closing seconds.

Video: PIT@CBJ, Gm4: Guentzel roofs rebound for late SHG

 

They said it

"I don't think we were good enough. You have to give them credit. They came out with a lot of urgency. We certainly talked about it before the game, being ready." -- Penguins coach Mike Sullivan

 

"Last period, win the period, win the game. That was our mentality." -- Blue Jackets right wing Brandon Saad

 

"They've all been good games. It's been a competitive series. They've had great starts in the games that we've weathered and come back and played well for stretches at a time. It hasn't been a one-team-dominant series to this point. We knew they were going to come out, try to get one game. They've got nothing to lose. They got the job done. We've got to get ourselves regrouped tomorrow and get ready for Thursday." -- Penguins defenseman Ron Hainsey

 

"The most important part of it is, we bent a little bit but we end up scoring. When they get closer, we end up with a shift and score a goal." -- Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella

 

Need to know

Crosby did not have shot attempt. … Guentzel, a rookie, has five goals to lead the series. … Karlsson's assist on Anderson's goal was his first NHL playoff point, in his fourth game. … Blue Jackets center Lukas Sedlak, who was out with an injury the first three games, was 6-0 on faceoffs. …The Blue Jackets have allowed at least three goals in each of their 14 playoff games and 10 times have given up four or more. …Columbus defeated Pittsburgh twice in the 2014 Eastern Conference First Round.

 

What's next

Game 5 of the Eastern Conference First Round at PPG Paints Arena on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, SN, TVA Sports 2, ROOT, FS-O)

 

Video: Jackets stave off elimination with 5-4 win vs. Pens

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