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game recap

Ondrej Pavelec sets Jets record in win

Makes 25 saves in second period; Pheonix Copley allows five goals in first NHL start

by Scott Billeck / NHL.com Correspondent

WINNIPEG -- Ondrej Pavelec made 34 saves and set a Winnipeg Jets record for saves in a period when they defeated Pheonix Copley and the St. Louis Blues 5-3 at MTS Centre on Saturday.

Pavelec didn't allow a goal making 25 saves in the second period. He won his second straight game since being recalled from Manitoba of the American Hockey League.

"I felt a bit better than the game before, for sure," said Pavelec, who defeated the Arizona Coyotes 6-3 on Wednesday. "A better start. I had a good practice yesterday. First game was a totally different story than tonight."

 

WATCH: All Blues vs. Jets highlights

 

Copley made 24 saves his first NHL start for the Blues (23-19-5), who have lost three straight games.

"I think a couple of those were stoppable on my end and it's a different game," Copley said. "But it was good to get in there and get in a game and we'll go from there. I felt good going in and I felt confident the whole way through."

Bryan Little scored two power-play goals, and Blake Wheeler, Mark Scheifele and Nikolaj Ehlers each had a goal and an assist for the Jets (22-23-4).

"Ever since Bryan Little came back into our lineup, we've been doing a pretty good job [on the power play]," Wheeler said of the center who returned from a lower-body injury on Nov. 29. "I think we have a little bit of confidence going on that power play. We're snapping it around pretty good. It's nice to see a couple go in."

Video: STL@WPG: Pavelec stones Bortuzzo, Lehtera in traffic

Kevin Shattenkirk scored twice, and Paul Stastny scored for St. Louis, which trailed 5-1.

"It was a bit of a roller coaster of a game … a lot of back and forth," Shattenkirk said. "I think the second period, we felt like we threw everything at them. Pavelec made some huge saves. He really kept them in the game, for sure."

Little scored at 7:47 of first period, tipping Dustin Byfuglien's point shot past Copley to make it 1-0. Shattenkirk tied the game 1-1 at 13:18 on the power play, shooting into a wide-open net after a pass from Stastny.

Wheeler made it 2-1 at 1:27 of the second period. Mathieu Perreault picked up a loose puck near the Blues blue line, made a spin move and passed to Byfuglien, who passed to Wheeler at the side of the net for his 15th goal.

Little scored to make it 3-1 at 2:10 of the third period, and Scheifele scored his 21st at 6:21, tying him with injured rookie forward Patrik Laine for the Jets lead. Ehlers made it 5-1 at 11:05 on the power play.

"Quite frankly, we're allowing too many goals against, obviously," Blues coach Ken Hitchcock said. "Too many easy scoring chances. We're getting scored on killing penalties now, so I think if we clean up our own end, both 5-on-5 and 5-on-4, it'll help us a lot."

Stastny scored at 12:11 to make it 5-2 and Shattenkirk made it 5-3 1:32 later.

 

Goal of the game

Wheeler finished a tic-tac-toe play after Little forced a turnover at the Blues blue line.

Video: STL@WPG: Wheeler buries nice feed from Byfuglien

 

Save of the game

Copley got his glove hand on a point-blank shot from Perreault in the third period.

Video: STL@WPG: Copley stands tall on Perreault's one-timer

 

Highlight of the game

Copley stretched out to deny Perreault on a 2-on-1 near the end of the second period.

Video: STL@WPG: Copley flashes the leather on Perreault

 

Unsung performance of the game

Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba had two assists, four shots, three hits and one blocked shot in 26:15.

 

They said it

"When I go back to my last three or four games, my legs didn't feel as well as they have been and that's why I just stopped skating. Even though they didn't feel much better today, I just went out there and put that away and just skated. I think that I've learned now that even though my legs aren't feeling great, you still got to go. I don't know why I didn't do that from the start, but I guess it's all a part of the learning process. Now I know." -- Jets forward Nikolaj Ehlers

 

"The biggest thing over the last 10 games is nobody is sick. Little's line tonight was absolutely spectacular. A week ago they were all sick." -- Jets coach Paul Maurice

 

Need to know

Jets forward Drew Stafford left the game after the second period with a lower-body injury. Maurice said Stafford will be re-evaluated Sunday. … Carter Hutton was the Blues backup goalie, and Jake Allen, who did not make the trip, was scratched. … Copley made his NHL debut in relief on Feb. 27, 2016 against the Nashville Predators. … Blues defenseman Jay Bouwmeester (lower body) was scratched. … Pavelec held the Jets/Atlanta Thrashers record with 24 saves in a period on Oct. 31, 2009 against the Ottawa Senators. … Blues forward Vladimir Tarasenko hasn't scored in seven games. … Laine skated Saturday and will participate in a full-contact practice Sunday.

 

What's next

Blues: At the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, ROOT, NHL.TV)

Jets: Host the Anaheim Ducks on Monday (8 p.m. ET; TSN3, KCOP-13, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Little's two power-play goals propel Jets past Blues

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