National Hockey League
Markus Nutivaara,Williams Karlsson and Boone Jenner each had a goal and an assist, and the Blue Jackets held on to beat the Penguins and avoid a sweep in the best-of-seven playoff series. Nutivaara, a rookie, was making his playoff debut.
Jack Johnson and Josh Anderson also scored for the Blue Jackets, who were able to outlast the Penguins when they pushed back hard in the second and third periods and then got a short-handed goal from Jake Guenztel with 27 seconds left in the game.
”That’s a good team – they can sense the blood in the water,” Tortorella said. ”But we got through it.”
Sergi Berbrosky had 27 saves to help the Blue Jackets get their first playoff win in three years and their first-ever in regulation.
The Penguins now lead 3-1 in the best-of-seven series, which returns to Pittsburgh for Game 5 on Thursday night.
Columbus got offense from its lower lines, building leads of 3-1, 4-2 and 4-3 before Jenner poked in a goal amid heavy traffic 5:37 into the third period for a 5-3 lead. Pittsburgh got the late goal but ran out of time.
”You earn your bounces, and they were better” Penguins star forward Sidney Crosby said. ”They earned the win, and we didn’t have the desperation that we needed to win the game.”
Johnson scored first for the Blue Jackets at 11:46 of the opening period when he launched a wrister from the right point into traffic that bounced off Crosby’s skate and into the net.
There was less luck involved when Anderson made it 2-0 with a little over minute left in the period. He grabbed a chip pass from Karlsson, circled in from the right and beat Fleury between the pads.
Columbus went up 3-0 at 4:49 of the second when Nutivaara scored off a rebound.
Just like in Game 3 when they rallied from a 3-1 deficit, the Penguins began roaring back.
Hornqvist struck for Pittsburgh during a power play 6:43 in the second. His rebound shot from the doorstep rolled up the pad of Bobrovsky with the goalie dropped in front of the net. Ten minutes later, Phil Kessell passed the puck out to Hainsey to the far right and he beat a shielded Bobrovsky from a severe angle. The Blue Jackets were lucky to get out of the last few minutes of the period without another score from the swarming Penguins.
The Blue Jackets got a goal from Karlsson 27 seconds into the third that seemed to pump them up again. But Kuhnhackl found the back of the net on a rebound less than two minutes later to make it 4-3 before Jenner put Columbus back up by two.
Other NHL Scores: NY Rangers beat Montreal 1-0, and Defending Western Conference Champ San Jose Shellacked Edmonton 7-0.
Major League Baseball
Mike Leake doesn’t have too many secrets on the mound. For the Cardinals right-hander, location is everything.
Leake owned the strike zone while pitching into the seventh inning, Dexter Fowler tripled and scored, and St. Louis beat Pittsburgh 2-1 on Tuesday night after Pirates OF Starling Marte was suspended 80 games for a banned substance earlier in the day.
”It’s just where he’s putting every pitch, and he’s able to throw every pitch on both sides of the plate and I’d say that sinker and cutter are closer to the same velocity, but you’re kind of working off the middle and running it to both sides,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said of Leake. ”That’s a tough at-bat if you’re putting it on the corner.”
Seung Hwan Oh allowed three hits in the ninth but escaped a one-out, bases-loaded jam for his second save.
Leake (2-1) allowed seven hits and only struck out one, but he held the Pirates to a run over 6 1/3 innings. He has won nine of his last 11 decisions against the Pirates dating to Sept. 11, 2012.
”He throws strikes,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. ”… He makes pitches, he’s very effective, he competes very well on the mound. He’s a guy that we’ve been challenged by.”
Leake has continued a strong spring through his first three starts of the season. He leads the rotation in wins, ERA (0.84) and innings pitched (21 1/3).
”I think this spring was a big spring for me and just kind of letting it translate into the season is as big,” Leake said.
The Cardinals have won back-to-back games for the first time this season to improve to 5-9.
”We get some positive ju-ju going our way and we’re eliminating our mistakes and that’s how we’re winning games,” Fowler said.
Chad Kuhl (1-1) gave up two runs over six innings. He allowed three hits and struck out three.
Fowler led off the first with a triple to right and scored on Stephen Piscotty‘s ground out.
Greg Garcia‘s double in the fifth scored Jose Martinez to make it 2-0 Cardinals. Garcia was thrown out trying to stretch it into a triple.
Brett Cecil, Matt Bowman and Oh pitched scoreless relief for St. Louis. Bowman extended his scoreless streak to 17 1/3 innings dating to last season.
Adam Frazier ed the Pirates’ run on a groundout by Gregory Polanco in the sixth.
Marte was suspended by Major League Baseball after testing positive for Nandrolone. He’s eligible to return in mid-July but won’t be allowed to play in the postseason if Pittsburgh advances.
Andrew McCutchen played center field for the first time this season in Marte’s absence and extended his hitting streak to nine games with a first-inning single. McCutchen was 2 for 4 and is hitting .333 (12 for 36) during his run.
McCutchen was moved from center to right this spring so the Pirates could shift Marte from left to center.
”Center field is where I need to play, it’s where I need to be,” McCutchen said. ”If I’ve got to show a couple of people that I can do it then that’s what I’m going to do.”
Other MLB Scores: Arizona beat San Diego 11-2, Colorado beat the LA Dodgers 4-3, Oakland beat Texas 4-2, Cleveland beat Minnesota 11-4, Giants beat KC 2-1, LA Angels beat Houston 5-2, Chicago Cubs beat Milwaukee 9-7, Washington beat Atlanta 2-1, Cincinnati beat Baltimore 9-3, Tampa Bay beat Detroit 2-1 Chicago White Sox beat the NY Yankees 4-1, Boston beat Toronto 8-7, Philadelphia beat the NY Mets 6-2 and Miami shut out Seattle 5-0.
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