NEWS
12/23/2017 19:47 EST | Updated 12/23/2017 20:01 EST

Boeser scores 20th goal, but Brodziak's two-point night leads Blues over Canucks

VANCOUVER — Kyle Brodziak had a goal and an assist as the St. Louis Blues snapped a three-game losing streak with a 3-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday.

Patrik Berglund and Alex Steen, into an empty net, also scored for St. Louis (23-13-2), which got 30 saves from Jake Allen.

Brock Boeser, with his team-leading 20th goal of the season, replied for Vancouver (15-17-5). Jacob Markstrom stopped 31 shots in taking the loss.

The Blues came in having dropped three straight in regulation on a road trip through Western Canada, while the Canucks have now lost four in a row (0-3-1), and are just 1-7-1 over their last nine while getting outscored 44-20.

Tied 1-1 late in the second period, Brodziak put the Blues ahead on a goal Markstrom will want back. The St. Louis centre fired a puck from the bottom of the face-off circle that tipped off Vancouver defenceman Ben Hutton's stick and slipped past the Canucks goalie shortside with 90 seconds left on the clock for Brodziak's sixth.

Markstrom, who was also at fault on the Blues' opener, was stellar for most of the period, stopping both Steen and Paul Stastny on breakaways before again thwarting Steen with a nice toe save moments after his gaffe on Brodziak's goal.

Brayden Schenn hit the post on a St. Louis power play midway through the third period before Markstrom stopped Joel Edmundson on the same man advantage.

Boeser broke the other way on a 2-on-1 shortly thereafter with the crowd at Rogers Arena buzzing, but Allen was there to make the save.

Brodziak and Alex Pietrangelo then each hit the post post in quick succession as the Blues pressed to extend their lead.

Boeser then went the other way again and ripped another shot off the wing that Allen stopped up high.

The Canucks continued to push, but couldn't find a way through before Steen scored into an empty net with 52.3 seconds left as St. Louis improved to 19-0-0 when leading after 40 minutes.

Down 1-0 after the first, Boeser evened things at 1:46 of the second on a slick passing play. The Canucks stripped Blues defenceman Colton Parayko of the puck in the St. Louis zone, with Sam Gagner feeding a pass to Thomas Vanek, who went back against the grain to find a wide-open Boeser.

The 20-year-old, who leads all NHL rookies in goals, is the fastest Canucks rookie to reach the 20-goal mark and, including his cameo at the tail end of last season, has now scored 24 times in 43 career games.

It took Pavel Bure 49 games to reach 20 goals in his rookie season with Vancouver back in 1991-92.

To put Boeser's impressive start another way, Canucks No. 1 centre Bo Horvat — currently out with a broken foot — led the team with 20 goals in 81 games last season.

The Blues opened the scoring at 11:17 of a sleepy first when Berglund, who missed an earlier backhand chance up high after the Canucks failed to clear the zone, wheeled out of the corner and let go a fluttering backhand from just inside the top of the high slot that beat Markstrom for his fifth.

Boeser made a nice move to spin back for a backhand shot off the rush earlier in the period, but Allen was there with his right pad before Gagner was also denied at the side of the net.

After the Blues went ahead, Vancouver had another great opportunity, but Alex Biega found iron on a shot from the point, and Markus Granlund hit the other post on the rebound before Allen smothered the puck on the goal line.

Notes: Hutton returned to the lineup after sitting out two straight as a healthy scratch. ... Berglund played in just his 14th game of the season after missing the first 24 contests following shoulder surgery.

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