St. Louis scores two goals in Lightning's victory

The Sports Xchange
The SportsXchange

TAMPA, Fla. -- Head coach Jon Cooper admitted the Tampa Bay Lightning had been "pretty rattled as a group" while allowing three power-play goals and surrendering the winning score in the waning seconds on Saturday against Pittsburgh.
However, the Lightning seemed plenty settled on Tuesday.
Ben Bishop made 30 saves and Martin St. Louis had two goals and an assist at Tampa Bay Times Forum as the Lightning beat the Los Angeles Kings 5-1.
Bishop won his fourth straight start and lowered his goals-against average to 1.46 in that span as Tampa Bay extinguished all five Kings power plays.
In fact, the Lightning were propelled by a penalty kill, after holding the Kings to just four shots on a four-minute man disadvantage in the second period.
"Probably the turning point of the game was to get out of that four minutes, and we kind of rolled from there," Cooper said.
Tampa Bay improved to 4-2-0, while the Kings dropped to 4-3 and had their three-game win streak stopped.
St. Louis' fourth goal of the season came late in the third period, sealing the win three minutes after the Kings had pulled within two scores. St. Louis took a pass from the high slot from Ryan Malone (goal, assist) and one-timed in a shot from the right side of the net. Steven Stamkos had his second assist of the night and fifth of the season on the play.
"It's unreal what he does," Cooper said of St. Louis, the team's 38-year-old captain. "He's the leader of the ship. You get your captain leading like that and everybody else does nothing but follow."
Malone had given the Lightning a 1-0 lead just 19 seconds into the game when, after a failed Kings clearing attempt, he deflected a deep shot from Sami Salo for his first goal of the season. St. Louis was credited with his sixth assist of the season.
Teddy Purcell doubled the lead at 12:44 of the period with his fourth goal of the season, off assists from Ondrej Palat (second) and Matt Carle (fourth). Purcell took a long pass out of the defensive end to rush the offensive zone untouched and blast his fourth goal of the season past Jonathan Quick.
Los Angeles generated greater energy and scoring opportunities in the second period around a double minor for high-sticking to Salo. The Kings outshot the Lightning 11-2 through the first 11 minutes of the period but couldn't dent Bishop.
"We weren't too happy with the penalty kill the last two games and came up big tonight," Bishop said. "Whenever you can kill four minutes like that, it was a big momentum swing."
The momentum subsided when the Kings were called for their first penalty of the game midway through the period, but Jordan Nolan set up Dwight King for a close-in chance that was blocked away by Bishop with seven minutes left in the period.
The lost opportunity was costly.
St. Louis used his third goal of the season to increase the lead to 3-0 with 3:38 left on an odd-man rush preceding what would have been a delayed penalty. After a Stamkos shot caromed off Quick and through the legs of Kings defenseman Drew Doughty, St. Louis followed up from close range for the score. Stamkos earned his fourth assist of the season and Andrej Sustr his first.
Slava Voynov trimmed the lead to 3-1 with 9:26 left in the game by taking a pass from Matt Frattin (third assist) and firing from open space in the slot. Jarret Stoll was awarded his second assist of the season.
"We didn't execute the game plan good enough," said Kings center Anze Kopitar. "A team like that can score goals, you'll pay the price."
Palat whacked in a loose puck in front of the net in the final two minutes for his second goal of the year and a 5-1 lead.
Kings head coach Darryl Sutter said his team had trouble on multiple levels on Tuesday, but foresaw no carryover heading into a game at Nashville on Thursday.
"We'll just get on a plane, go there tonight and be ready to play," he said. "It's not that hard, is it?"
NOTES: Quick entered the game on a two-game winning streak, having allowed only four goals in 53 shots in beating Ottawa and Carolina. But he surrendered two scores on 11 shots in the first period Tuesday. Quick was removed after allowing a third goal late in the second period. Ben Scrivens played in his second game this season. ... The Lightning entered the game with the 26th-ranked penalty kill in the league. ... Los Angeles entered with the ninth most productive power play in the league, scoring 25 percent of the time through six games. ... Tampa Bay C Stamkos entered the game with four goals in two games. ... RW St. Louis has a five-game point streak. He now has 902 points with the Lightning, 922 in his career, and is one point from tying Neal Broten for 93rd place on the all-time scoring list. ... Lightning D Victor Hedman had seven of the Lightning's 17 blocked shots. ... Los Angeles center Jeff Carter had a goal disallowed 32 seconds into the second period when officials ruled that Mike Richard had interfered with Lightning goaltender Bishop. The goal was immediately waved off but reviewed.

What to Read Next