Caggiula’s last-minute goal lifts Oilers over Blues, 3-2
EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) — The Edmonton Oilers are beginning to make up for their early-season struggles.
Drake Caggiula scored with less than a minute remaining and Edmonton won its third straight game for the first time this season, beating the St. Louis Blues 3-2 on Thursday night.
Caggiula took a pass in front from behind the net by Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and beat goalie Jake Allen with 49.8 seconds left. Michael Cammalleri and Connor McDavid also scored for the Oilers (16-17-2), who have won four of their last five.
“Big win. We hadn’t won three in a row yet this year, which is pretty remarkable. Nice to be able to do that,” McDavid said. “It felt a lot like last year — the crowd was into it. We had a lot of opportunities tonight where we could have just folded our hand and gone to sleep. We didn’t.”
Edmonton goalie Cam Talbot won his sixth consecutive start and agreed that the team seems to be regaining its form.
“You go down by a goal twice against a team like that, a really good defensive team, and are able to battle back — the resiliency on this team right now is at a level that we saw last year,” he said. “It is good to see it coming back. When we are playing with that kind of confidence, it is great to see from our group. Hopefully we can continue it.”
Tage Thompson and Patrik Berglund scored for the Blues (22-13-2), who have lost three in a row and five of six.
“I thought we played the way we wanted to play, but I thought once we scored, then we totally played on our heels and it became a free-for-all game both ways,” St. Louis forward Paul Stastny said. “It seems like whether we’re up 1-0 or we’re down 1-0, we completely change our game.”
The Blues had the best chances in a scoreless first period, outshooting Edmonton 11-5. Edmonton had a good chance midway through the second, but a shot by Darnell Nurse hit a post and slid through the crease under a diving Allen to safety. It was the Oilers’ fourth post of the game to that point.
The scoreless deadlock continued through 40 minutes with the shots favoring the Blues 26-19.
Stastny had a glorious opportunity seven minutes into the third when he stole the puck from Talbot behind the net, but the goalie made a desperate leap to prevent the wraparound attempt.
The Blues finally scored with 10:30 left in the third period as Thompson got a shot through traffic past Talbot for his first career goal.
Edmonton tied it 38 seconds later on a wrist shot by Cammalleri.
St. Louis regained the lead with 6:38 left when Berglund scored on a one-timer, but Edmonton tied it again as McDavid waited for Allen to go down before lifting in his 13th goal of the season with 3:41 left.
NOTES: It was the last of three meetings between the teams this season. The Blues won the two previous games by a combined score of 12-4. ... D Andrej Sekera made his season debut for the Oilers, playing for the first time since going down with a knee injury in his team’s second-round playoff series against Anaheim last season.
The Oilers host the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday.
The Blues visit the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday.
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