Flyers 5, Blues 2
ST. LOUIS (AP)—It was a rough initiation for the St. Louis Blues’ third-string goalie.
“I thought he played well, but you can tell this is a team that needs confidence,” said Peter Forsberg, who had two assists. “You kind of feel for them.
“They should be a pretty good team, but right now you can see they’re struggling.”
Patrick Lalime was waived Monday and backup Curtis Sanford was injured four days later, leaving 23-year-old Bacashihua to make his first career start. The Flyers beat Bacashihua on three of their first nine shots in the second period to break the game open.
Bacashihua, who played the last half of Friday night’s loss at Chicago, wasn’t too disappointed.
“I try not to put too much pressure on myself, I just try to tell myself to go out and have fun,” Bacashihua said. “This is a great experience and I just want to enjoy every minute of it.”
It may be his only start. The Blues could recall Reinhard Divis, who began the season as the backup, on Monday if he clears waivers.
Jon Sim also had two assists for the Flyers, who have won three of four despite being riddled with injuries. The Blues, who also lost star forward Keith Tkachuk with a broken hand Friday, have allowed five goals in losses on consecutive nights.
“Our goalie was terrific,” coach Ken Hitchcock said. “You need him to win on the road anyway and we did a lot of good things in the first two periods, and then we tried to sit on it in the third.”
The teams combined for four goals in a span of 1:42 early in the second period, the first and last coming from Umberger. The Flyers also got Knuble’s second goal of the game on a rebound, and Branko Radivojevic added an empty-netter in the final minute.
Aaron Downey scored his first goal of the season and Scott Young had a power-play goal for the Blues, last in the NHL with 16 points. St. Louis is 1-10-1 when playing on the second night of back-to-back games.
Knuble, who has three of his 16 goals in the last two games, got the lone tally of the first period on a power play at 18:05. Umberger’s rebound shot at 5:19 of the second made it 2-0 and began the four-goal flurry.
Downey scored off a loose puck in front 42 seconds later, Knuble swatted a rebound into an empty net 25 seconds after that and Umberger beat Bacashihua to the stick side 45 seconds later to put the Flyers ahead 4-1.
Young’s sixth goal cut the gap to two later in the period. The Blues had a 16-3 shots advantage in the third period, Niittymaki’s strongest of the game, but were outshot 24-15 in the first two.
New Blues backup goalie Chris Beckford-Tseu, called up from Alaska of the ECHL after Sanford’s injury, showed up from the West Coast about an hour before game time after beginning his travel day in Victoria, British Columbia. Bill Muller, a police officer in St. Charles County, would have been the backup otherwise. … Sami Kapanen had two assists and has seven points in five games. … The Flyers are 7-3-2 on the road.