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game recap

Panthers score five straight, hand Blues first loss of season

Luongo makes 37 saves, ties Joseph for fourth all-time with 454th NHL win

by Alain Poupart / NHL.com Correspondent

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Florida Panthers goalie Roberto Luongo didn't care about tying Curtis Joseph for fourth all-time with his 454th NHL win Thursday as much as he did about bouncing back from a disappointing start to the season.

Luongo made 37 saves and rookie defenseman Ian McCoshen scored his first NHL goal when the Panthers defeated the St. Louis Blues 5-2 at BB&T Center.

 

[WATCH: All Blues vs. Panthers highlights]

 

"Obviously it's nice, but my main goal is try to get this team back in the playoffs," Luongo said. "The only way to do that is to get some wins and the records will be hand in hand. We'll talk about those things during the offseason, but right now I'm focused on getting some wins and getting in the playoffs."

Luongo was making his second start of the season after allowing four goals on 25 shots in a 5-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning in the season opener Friday.

"It took a long time," Luongo said. "I was sitting on it for a while. Obviously I wanted to get back in there and get that one behind me. I was happy that I was able to string a good game together and get the win and the two points."

Video: STL@FLA: Luongo stones point shot with glove save

Jared McCann, Aaron Ekblad and Nick Bjugstad each had a goal and an assist for the Panthers (2-1-0). Vincent Trocheck scored a shorthanded goal, and Connor Brickley had two assists.

Paul Stastny and Vince Dunn scored for the Blues (4-1-0), who failed in their attempt to start 5-0-0 for the first time in their history. Jake Allen made 33 saves.

Stastny made it 1-0 at 1:14 of the second period with a power-play goal. He took a pass from Vladimir Tarasenko at the side of the net before moving the puck to the front and sliding it inside the far post.

McCoshen scored 12 seconds later with a wrist from the top of the left circle that beat Allen to the glove side to make it 1-1.

Video: STL@FLA: McCoshen nets first NHL goal from the point

"Obviously we wanted the momentum back on our side," McCoshen said after playing in his sixth NHL game. "I didn't know I was actually going to score. Just the time was picture perfect, I guess. I was wondering if I was ever going to score, but it was nice to get it tonight."

Trocheck gave Florida a 2-1 lead at 2:45 after a turnover in the neutral zone. He took a pass from Colton Sceviour, came in alone on Allen and beat him with a quick shot to the glove side.

McCann made it 3-1 at 7:42 with a power-play goal.

St. Louis failed to convert on a 5-on-3 power play for 1:03 at 17:06 of the second period.

Ekblad scored to make it 4-1 at 3:16 of the third period when he one-timed Jonathan Huberdeau's pass across the front of the net. Bjugstad made it 5-1 at 14:02 before Dunn made it 5-2 with 1:09 remaining with his first NHL goal.

Video: STL@FLA: Dunn scores his first NHL goal

"There's parts that were good until we scored the first goal," Blues coach Mike Yeo said. "Then we did a nice job of beating ourselves. They played a great game over there. We knew we'd have to play a strong, smart game and we didn't do that. That first goal, then we give them a [shorthanded goal], then power plays. That's a bad recipe against a good team."

 

Goal of the game

After Allen stopped Radim Vrbata's shot from the left wing, Vrbata got the puck in the same spot on a Florida power play in the second period. This time, Vrbata made a pass to the front of the net that McCann redirected with his backhand to beat Allen.

Video: STL@FLA: McCann deflects home a PPG from in front

 

Save of the game

Jaden Schwartz juked Ekblad and came in alone on Luongo with the Panthers leading 3-1. Schwartz attempted to slide the puck between Luongo's legs after a quick move to the backhand, but the goalie kept his stick on the ice to make the save.

 

Highlight of the game

A shot from the point bounced off the end boards and to Aleksander Barkov the side of the net. He one-timed it from a sharp angle, but Allen quickly moved to the left and swung out his glove to snag the puck in mid-air before it crossed the goal line.

Video: STL@FLA: Allen reaches to make incredible glove save

 

They said it

"They kept pushing and we had no response. We knew we weren't going to win them all." -- Blues defenseman Joel Edmundson

 

"I think we have a little bit of swagger right now, a little bit of confidence that even when we go down a goal or two, we know that we have the firepower to answer right back. Obviously, that's going to be huge for us going forward." -- Panthers forward Vincent Trocheck

 

Need to know

After Trocheck made it 2-1, it was the first time the Blues had trailed this season since the first period of their season opener against the Pittsburgh Penguins, a 5-4 overtime win. … McCann's goal ended a streak of 27 successful penalty kills for the Blues. The Panthers have scored 13 goals in the first three games, the most to start a season in their history.

 

What's next

Blues: At the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; SUN, FS-MW, NHL.TV)

Panthers: At the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; ATTSN-PT, FS-F, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Luongo, offense lead Panthers to 5-2 victory

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