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Pietrangelo scores in third to give Blues 3-2 win

Pietrangelo scores in third to give Blues 3-2 win

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The Blues started their first trip of the season with another come-from-behind win, with Alex Pietrangelo scoring in the third period to give the Blues a 3-2 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Monday at Scotiabank Arena.

All three games for the Blues this season have had a score of 3-2, with the Blues winning two of them and losing one in overtime. Toronto pulled its goalie with about 2 1/2 minutes to play and spent most of that time in the Blues end of the ice, but couldn't score.

Jordan Binnington stopped 32 of 34 shots he faced to win his first game in his hometown. Binnington made a right pad save with about 4 minutes to play to deny the Leafs a short-handed goal that would have tied the game. In the game, Toronto had 77 shot attempts to 51 for the Blues.

"He played really well," Blues coach Craig Berube said. "The first period, he made some big sames. They got the power play and some real good opportunities after that. He kept us in there in the first."

Brayden Schenn and Oskar Sundqvist also scored for the Blues.

Pietrangelo put the Blues ahead at 7:51 of the third. David Perron made a pass through the slot to Pietrangelo, who had an empty side of the net to shoot into. The goal, his second of the season, gave Pietrangelo 400 career points, joining Al MacInnis as the only Blues defenseman to reach that number. It was the 23rd game-winning goal for Pietrangelo, passing MacInnis for the most by a Blues defenseman.

Sammy Blais also had an assist on the play, giving him points in all three games and, in three games, as many goals and assists (two apiece) as he had in 32 games last season.

After playing poor second periods in their first two games, the Blues instead came out slowly this time and perked up in the second this time.

Sundqvist scored the game's first goal, firing a shot from the top of the right circle that went over the pads and under the glove of Toronto goalie Frederik Anderson. Ivan Barbashev and Jordan Binnington had the assists on the first goal of the season for the team's fourth line.

But Toronto scored twice in 24 seconds to take the lead. First, Frederik Gauthier scored in front of the goal after Jason Spezza knocked down the puck with what could have been a high stick, but which the Blues chose not to challenge with 8:26 to go in the period.

William Nylander then put the Leafs ahead as he drew goalie Jordan Binnington to the near post, then used some nice stickwork to maneuver around Binnington and put it into the net.

The Blues didn't fold, and Schenn evened the game with 47.3 seconds to go in the second, finding a loose puck that hit off a Toronto defender, skating in being Anderson from close range. Jaden Schwartz and Vladimir Tarasenko had the assists. 

"You go through stretches and last year we had to learn to deal with things," Berube said. "We became mentally tough. This team has learned to deal with that and we're suited a lot better for tough situations that occur."

The Blues outshot Toronto 15-12 in the second and it was much more one-sided in the early part of the period. The Blues had two power plays in the second period and didn't score, having three shots on goal in the four minutes. The Maple Leafs had a second-period power play and didn't score either.

The Blues were outshot 15-7 in the first period and had to kill off a Maple Leafs power play, but Jordan Binnington made the saves he had to and had another shot go off the post. Toronto had 28 shot attempts to just 12 for the Blues. 

This is the first NHL game in his hometown for Binnington, who didn't play in either of the games last season. The Blues are 12-1-1 in Toronto since 1999. It was also the first win in regulation for a Western Conference team against an Eastern Conference team in 10 tries.

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Alex Pietrangelo, Ryan O'Reilly and Jordan Binnington selected for event; festivities will be in St. Louis on Jan. 24 and 25; St. Louisan Matthew Tkachuk of Flames also selected; Perron can still get in through Last Man In voting

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