Parise scores twice to hand Devils second straight win

ST. LOUIS (Ticker) — Zach Parise scored two goals and continued
his torrid play as the New Jersey Devils won their second
straight game with a 4-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues on

Parise now has 41 points in his last 31 games, and has scored in
17 of those. Coming off a breakout 32-goal and 65-point
campaign in 2007-08, the 24-year-old has 21 goals and 23
assists, placing him fifth in the NHL in points.

“We had to find a way to win,” Parise said. “It wasn’t a work
of art by any means, but we played well.”

Brian Rolston and Jay Pandolfo also tallied and Scott Clemmensen
made 28 saves to help the Devils improve to 14-4-1 in their past
19 games.

Brad Boyes and David Backes each recorded a first-period goal
and Alex Steen added another with 28 seconds left in the
contest, but the Blues were unable to avoid their fourth loss in
five games.

“We failed to get the job done,” Blues coach Andy Murray said.
“To sit where we’re sitting right now and to continuously not
find a way doesn’t sit well.”

After Parise opened the scoring 62 seconds into the contest,
Boyes recorded his team-leading 18th goal of the season and
Backes followed 3 1/2 minutes later to give St. Louis a 2-1

“That was a nice way to get the game started,” Parise said.
“Those are nice ones to get. You feel like you have your legs
right away.”

Rolston tallied for the second consecutive contest to pull New
Jersey even 2:37 into the following session.

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With the help of Clemmensen, the Devils held off several scoring
chances from the Blues, who held a 20-16 shots advantage through
the first 40 minutes of play. Parise then took care of the

“It was a tough road win,” Clemmensen said. “It wasn’t the
prettiest win for us, but we got the win nonetheless. You take
them any way you can get them.”

The rising star gave New Jersey a lead it would not relinquish
by converting passes from captain Jamie Langenbrunner and
defenseman Bryce Salvador – a former Blues player – and lifting
a backhander over the shoulder of Manny Legace from in front of
the net with 5:41 left in the game.

“We need to find a way to win,” Murray said. “How many games
have we lost in the last five minutes of the hockey game?”

Pandolfo provided his insurance goal just over two minutes later
by deflecting Mike Rupp’s initial attempt while positioned on
the doorstep.

“We worked hard, but I don’t think we worked smart,” Devils
coach Brent Sutter said. “I don’t think it was one of our
sharpest games mentally, but we found a way to win. The team we
played worked hard and we knew that.”

Legace finished with 22 saves.

“It’s frustrating, very frustrating,” Legace said. “We’re
playing great hockey. It just seems like it’s one mistake and
the puck is in our net. We’re playing well, it’s just really
weird. I’m a karma-type guy and it’s going to switch. Things
happen for a reason.”