O’Reilly’s hat trick sends Blues past Hur­ri­canes

Gulf Times Sport - - SPORT -

Ryan O’Reilly’s first ca­reer hat trick led the St. Louis Blues to a 4-1 win over the vis­it­ing Carolina Hur­ri­canes on Tues­day. O’Reilly scored twice in the first pe­riod, net­ting the game’s first goal after a pass from Vladimir Tarasenko at the 11:57 mark. The cen­ter then struck again on a late power play, fir­ing a Tarasenko pass from be­hind the net into the Hur­ri­canes’ goal with just five sec­onds re­main­ing in the pe­riod.

An empty-net goal at 16:50 of the third pe­riod capped off the night for O’Reilly, giv­ing him his first hat trick after 664 ca­reer NHL games.

After be­ing traded from the Sabres to the Blues in the off­sea­son, O’Reilly’s ten­ure in St. Louis be­gan some­what slowly, as he didn’t score un­til the sev­enth game of the sea­son. Now, O’Reilly has seven goals and eight as­sists over his last eight games, with the eight-game point streak match­ing his pre­vi­ous ca­reer best.

Tarasenko and Tyler Bozak each had two as­sists in the game, all com­ing on helpers for O’Reilly. Play­ing his third game after an ab­sence of nearly 21 months from NHL ac­tion, Blues cen­ter Robby Fab­bri scored at 14:01 of the first pe­riod to notch his first goal since Dec. 28, 2016. Fab­bri put the fi­nal touch on a qual­ity se­ries of passes from the Blues, who quickly took the puck back the other way after Carolina rookie An­drei Svech­nikov’s shot hit the post.

Jac­cob Slavin ac­counted for Carolina’s only goal, a pow­er­play ef­fort on a slap­shot from be­yond the cir­cle at 19:34 of the first pe­riod. The goal was Slavin’s first of the year and ended a 24-game goal­less drought dat­ing back to last sea­son.

The Hur­ri­canes scored just the one goal de­spite a hefty 3920 edge in shots, with Jor­dan Staal and Lu­cas Wall­mark each con­tribut­ing five shots apiece. Carolina also came close on four more oc­ca­sions that saw the puck bank off the post, with Se­bas­tian Aho twice putting scor­ing chances off the iron­work.

St. Louis Blues cen­ter Ryan O’Reilly (90) cel­e­brates with left wing Alexan­der Steen (20) after scor­ing an empty net goal for his first ca­reer hat trick dur­ing the third pe­riod against the Carolina Hur­ri­canes at En­ter­prise Cen­ter. PIC­TURE: Jeff Curry-USA TO­DAY Sports

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