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game recap

Blues give Mike Yeo win against Wild

Jake Allen makes 32 saves for St. Louis; coach defeats former team

by Jessi Pierce / NHL.com Correspondent

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Jake Allen made 32 saves, and the St. Louis Blues won their second consecutive game, 2-1 against the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center on Tuesday.

It was the first game for Mike Yeo as coach of the Blues against the Wild, who he coached for five seasons. Yeo was fired by Minnesota on Feb. 13, 2016, and replaced Ken Hitchcock in St. Louis on Feb. 1.

"I'd be lying if it didn't feel pretty good, but in all honesty, we wanted this one for our group," Yeo said. "We had a chance to wrap up a road trip in a real positive way and we have a lot of respect for that team over there and knew that if we could come in and win this game it would be a real boost for us as a group."

 

WATCH: All Blues vs. Wild highlights

 

The Blues (33-27-5), 7-3-0 in their past 10 road games, played the finale of a three-game trip. They are three points ahead of the Los Angeles Kings for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference.

"I think everyone sacrificed a lot tonight, and I knew it wasn't going to be easy playing the top team in the League," Allen said. "Every game for us right now is crucial. It's a little different story for them. They're pretty solidified in the playoffs, and for us right now every game, every point matters, so that was a big one for us."

Video: STL@MIN: Allen pads away Niederreiter's one-timer

The Wild (42-16-6) are 12-5-1 in their past 18 games and 7-3-1 in their past 11 home games. They have a one-point lead on the Chicago Blackhawks for first place in the Central Division and Western Conference.

"You could see there was no energy [from us]," Minnesota coach Bruce Boudreau said. "I could tell from the first two minutes of the game that we didn't have a lot of jump or pizzazz or whatever the word is."

David Perron tipped in a shot at 10:24 of the first period for a 1-0 Blues lead, and Vladimir Tarasenko made it 2-0 at 11:03 of the third with his 29th goal.

Mikko Koivu spoiled Allen's bid for his second consecutive shutout when his shot from the neutral zone bounced in to make it 2-1 with 10.5 seconds remaining.

"Koivu owes me a beer for that," said Allen, who made 27 saves in a 3-0 win against the Colorado Avalanche on Sunday. "It took a real bad hop left on me. Anyway, those happen."

Video: STL@MIN: Koivu scores on fortuitous bounce past Allen

 

Goal of the game

Perron redirected Colton Parayko's shot from the point past goalie Devan Dubnyk for his 13th goal, third in his past 29 games.

Video: STL@MIN: Perron's crafty redirect opens the scoring

 

Save of the game

Allen got his stick down on the ice to stop Eric Staal's shot toward the five-hole on a shorthanded breakaway at 10:00 of the second period.

Video: STL@MIN: Allen slides to deny Staal on a breakaway

 

Unsung performance of the game

Wild defenseman Jared Spurgeon cleared the puck when it sat inches from the goal line after Dubnyk lost sight of the rebound off a Parayko shot at 11:12 of the second.

 

Highlight of the game

Jaden Schwartz sent a behind-the-back pass to Tarasenko for his one-timer goal.

Video: STL@MIN: Tarasenko buries Schwartz's no-look feed

 

They said it

"Don't give up on us. We're still building. We're still trying to find our way. It's a new group of leadership, it's a new group of players. Although as an organization we've done great things the last several years, it's this group that's trying to carve out our own identity and our own culture, and tonight was a good step." -- Blues coach Mike Yeo

 

"We definitely made it too easy for [Blues goale Jake Allen]. We didn't get enough traffic in front of his net. That's partly my fault. I have to make sure the big guys like myself, [Charlie Coyle] and [Chris Stewart], we have to make sure we get in front of their net and screen the goalie." -- Wild forward Nino Niederreiter

 

Need to know

Forward Dmitrij Jaskin returned to the Blues lineup after missing two games with an ankle injury. …Wild defenseman Matt Dumba missed the game with an illness. Minnesota recalled defenseman Gustav Olofsson from Iowa of the American Hockey League. … Koivu has 11 points (two goals, nine assists) in his past 10 games.

 

What's next

Blues: Host the Anaheim Ducks on Friday (8 p.m. ET; FS-MW, PRIME, NHL.TV)

Wild: At the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday (7:30 p.m. ET; SUN, FS-N, FS-WI, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Tarasenko, Allen lead Blues to 2-1 win vs. Wild

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