Blues put brakes on five-game home skid

Steve Overbey, The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

ST. LOUIS -- St. Louis winger David Perron admittedly struggled during the first two periods of Saturday night's game against Columbus.
"I wasn't happy with my play at all," he said.
But Perron more than made up for the rough start.
The 24-year-old scored midway through the third period to snap a tie and help the Blues break a five-game home-ice losing streak with a 2-1 win over the Blue Jackets.
Jaroslav Halak made 19 saves and Chris Stewart also scored for St. Louis, which had gone 27 days without a home win.
The Blues were outscored 23-9 in their their previous five losses, marking the longest skid since they dropped seven in a row from Nov. 25 to Dec. 17, 2006.
Columbus lost for the seventh time in nine games.
Perron converted from the slot after taking a nifty pass from David Backes at 9:51. It was the sixth goal of the season for Perron, who hit the post earlier in the second period.
"I was able to get my legs in the third period, I felt a lot better," Perron said.
St. Louis has won four of its last six, including road wins at Detroit, Calgary and Vancouver.
Backes started the play with a pass to the wide-open Perron, who didn't get good wood on the shot.
"I kind of fanned on it a little bit," Perron said. "But it seems like when you're in good spots, shots like that find a way to get in."
Halak improved to 4-0-1 with his second solid effort since missing eight games with a groin injury. He came up with two big glove saves in the final 59 seconds when Columbus had a six-on-four advantage. He was also sharp in a 1-0 loss at Colorado on Wednesday, making 19 stops as well.
"Guys did a heck of a job blocking shots," Halak said. "It was a crazy end for us. Sometimes it's not easy. It wasn't pretty at times, but we got two points and now we can keep moving forward."
The St. Louis players were able to relax a bit after a monthlong stretch of home-ice futility.
"It's a great feeling right now. It has been a while," defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk said. "We were so used to (winning at home) last year. Now that we've finally got it back and we feel how good it is, it's going to be nice going forward."
Stewart put the Blues in front with his first seventh goal of the season at 13:55 of the first period. He blasted a shot over the right shoulder of Sergei Bobrovsky from the top of the faceoff circle.
Columbus tied the score at 1 on a short-handed goal by Matt Calvert late in the second period. Calvert broke in alone after a pass from James Wisniewski and slipped the puck behind Halak. It was Calvert's third goal of the season and second short-handed.
Bobrovsky, who fell to 3-6-2, was pulled from the first meeting between the teams after allowing three goals on 11 shots in the Blues' 4-1 win on Jan. 31.
Columbus, which is 1 of 17 on the power play in the past five games, came in off an impressive 3-2 road win in Detroit.
"I thought we played a good game. We battled hard," Calvert said. "But it comes down to playing a full 60 (minutes) and I'm not sure we did that."
Blue Jackets coach Todd Richards agreed.
"We defended pretty well," he said. "But maybe we have to dig a little harder in the offensive zone."
St. Louis now has four days off before playing host to red-hot Chicago on Thursday.
NOTES: The Blue Jackets will conclude a season-high six-game road trip Sunday in Chicago. They return home to face Dallas on Tuesday. That will begin a string of 10 home dates in 12 games. .... Columbus winger Jared Boll leads the NHL with seven fighting majors. ... Halak is 16-1-1 in his last 18 regular-season home starts. His only regulation loss was a 5-2 setback to Columbus on March 31, 2012. ...Columbus winger Vinny Prospal has 249 career goals. ... The Blue Jackets have scored just 11 first-period goals in 19 games. .... Shattenkirk posted his team-high 14th assist on Stewart's first-period goal. ... Columbus defenseman Jack Johnson suffered an upper-body injury late in the first period and did not return.

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