- The Washington Times - Thursday, March 12, 2009

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Andy McDonald had a goal and an assist, and Chris Mason made 24 saves to lead the St. Louis Blues to a 3-1 victory over the slumping San Jose Sharks on Thursday night.

Brad Boyes also scored his team-leading 28th goal, and Barret Jackman added an empty-netter for St. Louis. The Blues are 2-0 on their four-game homestand and three games over .500 (31-28-8) for the first time since Oct. 18 when they were 4-1.

Patrick Marleau scored his 35th goal for San Jose, which has slipped to second in the Western Conference during a 1-4-1 skid.

Brian Boucher, playing in place of No. 1 goalie Evgeni Nabokov, made 23 saves for the Sharks. Nabokov missed his fifth straight game due to an undisclosed lower body injury.

With the teams skating 4-on-4, Boyes gave the Blues the lead for good. McDonald led a rush into the San Jose zone and fed the puck to Boyes, who snapped a wrist shot from the high slot past Boucher at 13:22 of the second period to make it 2-1.

Jackman sealed St. Louis’ victory when he scored into an empty net on a shot from his own end with 25.1 seconds left.

San Jose, which came into the game ranked second in the NHL on the power play (24.4 percent), took a 1-0 lead 11:30 in. Christian Erhoff got the puck in the left circle off a faceoff and centered to Marleau in the slot. Marleau then beat Mason with a wrist shot.

The Blues tied it at 16:48 when David Perron and McDonald executed a perfect 2-on-1 break. Perron brought the puck in on right wing and passed cross-ice to McDonald, who deked Boucher and slid the puck under him.

Notes:@ Patrik Berglund (upper body) and Alex Steen (lower body) were late scratches for St. Louis. … Marleau’s goal was San Jose’s league-leading, 72nd in the first period. … Boyes extended his point streak to four games (three goals, three assists).

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