Marty St. Louis Nets Game Winner To Give Bolts 4-2 Victory
The Tampa Bay Lightning finished their four game Western Canada swing defeating the Winnipeg Jets by a final score of 4-2. The victory gives the Bolts their third victory on the road trip and improves their record to 26-13-4. The Jets drop their fourth in a row and their record falls to 19-22-5.
The trying day began for Captain Marty St. Louis began with the disappointment of not making Team Canada but ended by netting the game winning goal and sealing the victory with an empty netter earning him the games top star.
After the game St. Louis understandably did not want to talk about the Team Canada situation saying, “I’ve said all that I have to say on that matter. I was extremely disappointed let’s leave it at that.”
Coach Jon Cooper spoke to St. Louis in the morning and Cooper said, “It’s tough because I’m sure he probably didn’t want to talk about anything but some things he had to get off his chest a little bit. It was a coach and a captain sitting there probably saying the exact same thing to each other.”
As for his performance in the game Cooper said, “That’s why he’s a champion. That’s why he has a Stanley Cup Ring and that’s why he’s our captain. To go through something like that and respond the way he did, can’t say enough about him.”
The Jets had scored both of their goals on power plays while their penalty kill unit had held the Bolts off the board for each of their first four opportunities but were given their fifth opportunity when Michael Frolik was called for boarding after a vicious hit on Nate Thompson which may result in league disciplinary action.
Less than a minute into the power play Martin St. Louis scored his 18th goal of the season to give the Lightning the 3-2 lead. Even with the lead the Bolts continued to work hard and pressure Jets goalie Ondrej Pavalec who was up to the task on several tough shots to keep the game tight facing 32 shots and making 29 saves.
The Lighting put the game away once Pavelec left the ice as Martin St. Louis scored his 2nd goal of the night, an empty netter, to give the Bolts a 4-2 victory. St. Louis now has 952 points in his career tying him with Rick Tocchet for 89th place on the all-time NHL points list.
The Lightning quickly jumped on top of the Jets at the 1:20 mark when Valtteri Filppula scored his 17th goal of the season. He later earned an assist on St. Louis’ second goal giving him 15 points (seven goals, eight assists) over his past 11 games.
Olli Jokinen scored a 5 on 3 power play goal, his 11th goal of the season, at the 16:43 mark to tie the game and took a 2-1 lead at the 4:45 mark of the second period when Dustin Byfuglien scored a power play goal .
Ondrej Palat tied the game at the 15:37 mark with his eighth goal on the season. The goal was Palat’s seventh consecutive game with point which ties the franchise record for rookies held by Brad Richards (January 29, 2001 through February 13, 2001) and is the longest of the season for any rookie.