COLUMBUS, Ohio – Jake Voracek had a goal and an assist and Kristian Huselius added the decisive goal to lead the Columbus Blue Jackets to a 4-3 pre-season victory over the Nashville Predators on Friday night.
R.J. Umberger and Andrew Murray also had goals for Columbus (1-2), with Kris Russell adding two assists. Martin Erat had a goal and an assist and Geoff Peters and Shea Weber also scored for the Predators (0-2).
Huselius made it 4-2 with 3:28 left on a breakaway. After Peters’ goal cut the lead to one, the Predators were on the power play for the final seconds but failed to get a shot on goal.
“It’s always nice to get a winning feeling,” said Huselius of the Blue Jackets’ first exhibition win after two one-goal losses. “There were key situations at the end and we had to bear down, pay attention to details. We made some good plays and Pascal (Leclaire) made some key saves there at the end.”
The Predators led 2-1 after the first period, Erat opening the scoring and then assisting on Weber’s go-ahead goal from the left dot while Nashville was on a two-man advantage.
Umberger, a former Ohio State player acquired in a draft-day trade with Philadelphia, scored for Columbus on a backhanded rebound of a shot by Voracek. The Blue Jackets had a sixth attacker at the time because of a delayed penalty.
The Blue Jackets scored twice in 39 seconds early in the second period. Voracek was credited with the power-play goal on a wraparound that went in off the skate of Nashville defenceman Kevin Klein. Before that goal could be announced, Murray scored off a hard pass from the left point by Jan Hejda.
“I tried a pass to Rick and somehow it went in,” Voracek said with a grin.