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Shattenkirk scores shootout winner to complete Blues' comeback

The SportsXchange

ST. LOUIS -- Kevin Shattenkirk has been involved in enough games between the St. Louis Blues and Chicago Blackhawks that he expects nothing less than a shootout every time the two teams play.

That was true again Saturday night, even when the Blues fell behind by two goals, 3-1 and 5-3, and the St. Louis defenseman was not disappointed.

He watched as his team rallied both times, getting goals from right winger Vladimir Tarasenko and center Patrik Berglund, on a power play, in the final 3:51 of regulation to tie the game 5-5 and force overtime before the game went to a shootout.

That's when Shattenkirk took matters into his own hands, scoring in the fifth round of the shootout to break a 2-2 tie and give the Blues a 6-5 victory, their second shootout win in three games against the Blackhawks this year.

"We're getting used to these games," Shattenkirk said. "They are very emotional, up and down. There's two great teams out there and I think that's why they are always so close and going the distance. It's really just important to stay with it. We didn't quit, and we were able to kind of weather the storm and wait until they cracked a little bit. It was just a great hockey game."

The Blues got shootout goals from right wingers T.J. Oshie and Vladimir Tarasenko, while Blackhawks center Jonathan Toews and left winger Patrick Sharp scored. Some misses put Shattenkirk on the ice against Chicago goalie Antti Raanta.

"Literally when I went out there I looked at Stewie (Chris Stewart) and Osh (T.J. Oshie) and Stewie just said 'low blocker,'" Shattenkirk said. "He must have seen it and I just stuck to his word."

Goalie Brian Elliott followed Shattenkirk's goal by stopping a shot by left winger Brandon Saad to allow the Blues to raise their record against Chicago this year to 1-0-2.

It was the second time in the last two years Shattenkirk won a game against Chicago with a shootout goal.

"This time I was the fifth shooter, last time I was the seventh so I think they're getting a little more faith in me," Shattenkirk said. "It's nice when you get out there and have a chance to win it for your team. It's a completely different situation than when you are trying to keep your team alive."

Staying alive was all the Blues were trying to do in regulation after the Blackhawks built the 3-1 lead after the first period, and then snapped a 3-3 tie with the game's next two goals, by Saad and defenseman Brent Seabrook to again go up by two goals early in the third period.

"Some playoff games are like that," said St. Louis coach Ken Hitchcock. "When neither team can control the other team's play in the offensive zone it's dicey. They couldn't handle us in their zone and we couldn't handle them in their zone. I was happiest that we stayed with it. It wasn't pretty for either team but we hung in there and found a way to get two points which is a heck of a bonus for us. A lot of our younger players really came to play today."

Of the Blues' five goals in regulation, three came from young players Schwartz, Tarasenko and right wing Dmitrij Jaskin, who scored his first career goal in his fourth NHL game, the second this season.

"It was a good event for them to be a part of," Hitchcock said. "When it was 3-3 I thought we had all the momentum. The fourth goal took the wind out of our sails but I don't think we lost focus. We just kept playing. When we scored the fourth goal I thought we were going to come back and tie it. "

Tarasenko's goal at 16:09 cut the Chicago lead to 5-4 and Berglund then scored 34 seconds after Chicago defenseman Niklas Hjalmarsson was called for a minor holding penalty.

The Blackhawks were disappointed in the result, especially after they had taken the early lead, scoring goals by Sharp, Andrew Shaw and Kane on only 11 shots on goal against St. Louis goalie Jaroslav Halak. Hitchcock pulled Halak after the first period in favor of Elliott.

"It was a competitive game," said Chicago coach Joel Quenneville. "They really turned it up in the second period and we didn't have the great response that we needed. Every game (against St. Louis) has been tight, competitive, exciting. They're a good team. I expect to be in a race the whole time."

Being on the winning side would have made it better, Kane admitted.

"They're fun games," he said. "We knew they weren't going to quit. We got a point, so I guess that's one positive we can take from it."

NOTES: The Blues placed LW Alexander Steen on injured reserve Saturday because of a concussion. Steen, second in the NHL with 24 goals, will be out for an "indefinite" period, the team said. The Blues believe the concussion is the culmination of several recent hits and not the result of one specific incident. ... To replace Steen the Blues recalled LW Sergey Andronov from their AHL affiliate, the Chicago Wolves, where he recorded a hat trick on Friday night, but he was a pre-game scratch. ... The Blackhawks think G Corey Crawford, who missed his ninth consecutive game Saturday night because of a lower-body injury, could be ready to play by the end of next week. ... This was the third of five games between the Blues and Blackhawks. They will not meet again until March 19 in Chicago. ... The Blues play at Dallas on Sunday night while the Blackhawks return home to host the Los Angeles Kings on Monday night.
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