NHL Game Summary - Philadelphia at St. Louis
(Saturday, December 17th)
Final Score: Philadelphia 5, St. Louis 2
St. Louis, MO (Sports Network) - R.J. Umberger and Mike Knuble each scored two goals to lead the Philadelphia Flyers past the St. Louis Blues, 5-2, at Savvis Center.
Branko Radivojevic added an empty-net goal for the Flyers, who won for the sixth time in their past nine games. Antero Niittymaki made 29 saves in net in place of starting netminder Robert Esche, who is expected to miss at least two weeks with a groin injury.
"The young guys that have come up have been great and even our young guys that have been here all season are just chipping in, like R.J. with a pair of goals tonight," said Knuble.
Peter Forsberg and Sami Kapanen each had a pair of assists, as Philadelphia won for the fifth straight time in St. Louis.
Aaron Downey and Scott Young each scored for the Blues, who lost for the eighth time in their last 10 games. St. Louis was also using a backup goaltender, Jason Bacashihua, after placing Curtis Sanford on injured reserve with a hip injury. Bacashihua stopped 22-of-26 shots in the loss.
"I try not to put too much pressure on myself," said Bacashihua, a rookie. "It's a great experience for myself and I'm going to enjoy every minute of it."
The Blues also put forwards Dallas Drake and Keith Tkachuk on injured reserve before the game. Drake has a back injury, while Tkachuk is suffering from a broken knuckle.
Philadelphia had five power plays in the first frame, but didn't capitalize until the last one.
With 1:55 left in the period, Forsberg controlled the puck in the right circle and the center sent a soft pass to the slot through two defenders that Knuble one-timed into the net for a 1-0 edge.
The teams then combined to score four goals, three by the Flyers, in a 1:42 span during the second period.
Philadelphia took a two-goal edge at the 5:19 mark after Umberger backhanded a rebound past Bacashihua from the right side of the net.
However, St. Louis made it a one-goal game just 32 seconds later. After a failed clearing attempt by Niittymaki behind his own net, Downey found the puck on the left side and put the disc into the net before Niittymaki recovered.
The Flyers responded, though, just 25 seconds later after Kapanen passed to Forsberg in front of the net from the left circle. Forsberg's ensuing shot was blocked, but Knuble was there to put in the rebound for a 3-1 advantage.
Philadelphia finished off the flurry of goals after Umberger converted a Ben Eager pass into a one-time goal from the left circle for a 4-1 lead at the 7:01 mark of the second.
Young converted a power-play goal after his shot from the right circle trickled past Niittymaki to make it 4-2 with 3:27 left in the second.
The offense slowed down in the third and Radivojevic's empty-net tally capped the scoring with 43 seconds left in the game.
In addition to Esche, rookie centers Jeff Carter (ear laceration) and Mike Richards (whiplash) both missed the game, forcing the Flyers to recall forwards Ben Eager, Pat Kavanagh, Matt Ellison and Josh Gratton and goaltender Jamie Storr from the Philadelphia Phantoms before the game...St. Louis, meanwhile, called up goaltender Chris Beckford-Tseu from the Alaska Aces of the ECHL...Kapanen recorded his 400th career point on his first assist of the game...After having five power plays in the first frame, Philadelphia had none the rest of the way...Forsberg has 34 assists on the year...St. Louis was 1- of-6 with the extra skater.
12/18 00:08:22 ET