Ducks Keep Rolling Against Blues

Anaheim continued their winning ways with a 4-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues.  They have 11 straight victories at home, a record for the team, and have not lost there this season since their home opener.

At the halfway point, the Ducks are solidly in second place in the NHL with an 18-3-3 record.  They are only six points behind Chicago and slowly creeping up on them as the Blackhawks got their second regulation loss.

How does this team keep getting it done?

“We’ve played in all different situations throughout the year," said captain Ryan Getzlaf. "We’ve played with leads, we’ve played from behind. We’ve won close games and other games. When you’re playing well, you try to stick with that confidence that you have the ability to do it. Stick with your system that works. And that’s what good teams do."

Anaheim is definitely a good team this season. 

The victory over an injury depleted St. Louis was another come from behind effort.   Ryan Reaves scored at 6:09 of the first period, the first time eight games that the Ducks have allowed the other team to score first.   It was also the first goal the Ducks had allowed, period, in the past three games.

Andrew Cogliano got a short handed goal at 8:24 of the middle frame.  It was his second chance, and the second attempt went in behind Jaroslav Halak.  The Ducks needed that boost after failing on a 5 on 3 attempt before going down a man themselves.

The Blues took the crowd out of it again when Patrik Berglund regained the lead for St. Louis at 1:41 of the third period with a power play goal.  Jonas Hiller was screened and could not even see the shot.

Fortunately, Bobby Ryan tied up the game once more at 3:11, giving his team and the crowd new life.  Francois Beauchemin's shot hit Getzlaf on the backside with Ryan picking up the rebound and finishing things off.  A painful assist, but the end result sure felt good.

Corey Perry gave the Ducks their first lead with a power play goal at 5:20 and added the insurance marker with the empty net goal at 19:20.  Perry did a brilliant fake out of St. Louis, pretending to pass the puck to Ryan.  After Alex Pietrangelo moved over to defend Ryan, Perry just popped the puck in the open lane and put it directly in the net. 

"It feels good," said Perry. "Everybody here knows what's going on and the role they're supposed to be playing. Everyone is adapting to it. We're staying positive when we get down in games, whether it's early or like tonight in the third period, we find a way to win. We don't deviate from our game plan. It has definitely helped us confidence-wise, especially when it starts from the goalie right on up."

The Ducks now take the show on the road for three games against Minnesota, Dallas and a repeat visit with St. Louis.

In other notes:  Nick Bonino was a late scratch in the game due to flu symptoms.


About Karen Francis

Just a diehard Ducks fan since 1995, when the team filled the hockey shaped vacuum in my heart.