Avs feel­ing the Blues – again – af­ter an­other shot at win­ning

The Denver Post - - SPORTS - By Terry Frei

The Avalanche had a chance to win for the fourth time in its last five home games Tues­day night.

As with so many other op­por­tu­ni­ties this sea­son, though, the Avs couldn’t pull it off.

Af­ter Colorado held a 1-0 lead on the strength of an early John Mitchell goal un­til late in the sec­ond pe­riod, St. Louis ral­lied for a 4-2 win at the Pepsi Cen­ter.

The Blues were up 3-2 and Colorado goalie Calvin Pickard was off for a sixth at­tacker when Nathan MacKin­non rang a shot off the cross­bar and the Blues clinched it with Pa­trik Ber­glund’s empty-net­ter with 48 sec­onds left.

“I hit it square and it went up over the mesh,” MacKin­non said of his shot. “It feels like that’s the way it’s go­ing. … It feels like we’re back in Novem­ber and De­cem­ber again. We just fell apart in the third pe­riod. It’s tough to say ex­actly what it is, but it has to stop.”

Mitchell got his third goal of the sea­son in his re­turn to the lineup af­ter be­ing a healthy scratch at Chicago on Sun­day.

“We’re play­ing real well in the first pe­riod,” he said. “We had tons of scor­ing chances even in the sec­ond pe­riod. We just have to find a way to get those pucks into the back of the net. We gave our­selves an op­por­tu­nity to get up 2or even 3-0, so we just have to find a way to do that.”

Ber­glund, Mag­nus Paa­jarvi and for­mer Colorado Col­lege stand­out Jaden Schwartz scored con­sec­u­tive goals to give the Blues a 3-1 lead be­fore Colorado de­fense­man Mark Bar­be­rio scored with 5:10 re­main­ing to get the Avalanche within 3-2.

With 83 points, the Blues now are tied for third in the Cen­tral Divi­sion with Nashville — the top three teams in the divi­sion qual­ify for the post­sea­son au­to­mat­i­cally — and both are eight points in front of the Los An­ge­les Kings in the chase for the sec­ond Western Con­fer­ence wild-card spot.

The Avs’ Rene Bourque flips the puck in the air as the Blues’ Joel Ed­mund­son cov­ers in the first pe­riod of Tues­day’s game at the Pepsi Cen­ter. St. Louis won 4-2. David Zalubowski, The As­so­ci­ated Press

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