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Blues' defense clamps down on Rangers

by Staff Writer / New York Rangers
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Brian Elliott made 25 saves, and Alex Steen had a goal and an assist in the St. Louis Blues' 4-1 victory over the New York Rangers on Thursday night.

Elliott, who has won nine of his last 10, lowered his NHL-leading goals-against average to 1.43 and increased his league-best save percentage to .950.

The Blues (7-0-1) have 15 of a possible 16 points against Eastern Conference foes this season. St. Louis also has beaten up the Rangers over the past 10 years, going 9-1-3 since 2000-01.

Steen's goal put him in double digits with 10. Patrik Berglund, David Perron and Jami Langenbrunner also scored for the Blues, who have points in 14 of their last 16 games.

Michael Del Zotto scored for New York, and Henrik Lundqvist made 32 saves.

Given Elliott's stinginess, the Rangers put themselves in a big hole by allowing two goals in the first 11:03.

Berglund opened the scoring at 7:06 when he walked out from the corner and beat Lundqvist with a wrist shot from the right circle. Just 3:57 later, Perron tipped home Carlo Colaiacovo's shot from the left point, marking the first time the Blues had scored two goals in the first period since Oct. 22, a span of 21 games.

The Blues outshot the Rangers 13-5 in the second period, but New York got the only goal when Del Zotto beat Elliott with a backhander at 16:18 to make it 2-1.

Steen gave St. Louis its two-goal lead back when he scored 1:01 into the third period. Langenbrunner then scored into an empty net with 2:17 left to seal it.

Notes: Colaiacovo's next assist with be his 100th. . . . The Blues and the Red Wings are the only teams that Lundqvist has failed to beat in his career (0-3-0 against St. Louis). . . . St. Louis is 13-0-0 when it scores three or more goals. . . . The game marked only the 11th time in 29 games an opponent has scored more than two goals against the Rangers.
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