Toews, Huet lift Blackhawks to shootout win over Blue Jackets

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By Dave Holstein

PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

COLUMBUS, Ohio (Ticker) -- Captain Jonathan Toews scored the

lone goal of the shootout and Cristobal Huet shined in goal as

the Chicago Blackhawks notched their first win of the season in

the bonus format Saturday, a 4-3 victory over the Columbus Blue

Jackets.

Huet turned aside 48 shots before denying Kristian Huselius,

captain Rick Nash and Jakub Voracek in the shootout to lift the

Blackhawks to their second straight triumph.

"I think we have gone to a shootout with every team in our

division, so for us to get those two points, it's big for us to

come in here and steal one on the road," Toews said. "I think

when you start winning, you get one or two wins on the road and

it builds your confidence."

Patrick Sharp registered his seventh goal of the season while

defenseman Brent Seabrook and Martin Havlat scored power-play

tallies for Chicago. Kris Versteeg and blue-liner Duncan Keith

notched two assists apiece.

The Blue Jackets received a power-play goal from R.J. Umberger

and key third-period tallies from defenseman Fedor Tyutin and

Huselius.

"I think they are a team that throws the puck to the net," Huet

said. "I think we worked really hard. We still made a few

mistakes, but overall, we corrected them throughout the game.

We did a good job to contain them.

"We needed that road win desperately. We wanted to get one as

soon as possible, and the guys were very much ready to get that

win."

After Huselius was stopped by Huet in the first round of the

shootout, Toews beat goaltender Fredrik Norrena with a quick

wrist shot. Huet followed with impressive saves on Nash's

backhanded attempt and Voracek's snap shot to secure the

victory.

"I know Nash is coming with speed, and he likes going to his

backhand. He made a few moves, but I didn't bite too much,"

Huet said of the save on the former Maurice Richard Trophy

winner. "You never know what to expect from those guys. They

are pretty high-skilled guys."

Chicago opened the scoring when Sharp scored off his own rebound

with 6:15 left in the first period.

Umberger forged a tie with the man advantage 2 1/2 minutes

later, netting his first goal as a Blue Jacket when he

redirected a pass from Voracek while standing at the top of the

crease.

"We got outworked on the special teams tonight. That's a big

factor," Umberger said. "You'll run into goalies that play well

like that, but (the) penalty kill has to be better. And on the

power play, we had our chances and we didn't score, so that's

the difference in the game."

Columbus had almost five consecutive minutes of power-play time

in the second but registered only five shots on goal and failed

to score.

"That was definitely a goalie win tonight," Chicago coach Joel

Quenneville said. "(Huet) was great and we battled back there.

I felt like (Huet) was the story of the night, and I felt that

(Toews) has been great in shootouts. We found a way to win."

Chicago went on the man advantage when Columbus' chances expired

and scored on its first shot when Seabrook fired a one-timer

from the top of the left faceoff circle past Norrena with 1:55

left in the session.

Columbus finished 1-for-10 on the power play, while Chicago went

2-for-4. Despite such shortcomings, Umberger felt there were

plenty of positives.

"Especially to a division opponent, you know they played last

night, so you've got to think that we would've had the jump out

there and dictate the game," Umberger said. "We didn't quit.

That shows a lot from our team. We've done that the last couple

of games.

"I think we're close to putting this together, where we're going

to go on a (winning) stretch here, you know. I've got a good

feeling about this team."

Tyutin helped the Blue Jackets tie the game early in the third

with a shorthanded goal, but Havlat struck just 33 seconds later

on the same power play to reclaim the lead for the Blackhawks.

"We overwhelmed them for most of the game, but we lost the

special-teams game," Columbus coach Ken Hitchcock said. "They

scored two and we scored one, and that's the story of the game.

Then they won the shootout special teams, too."

Columbus pulled even again at 3-3 when Huselius skated between

the faceoff circles and beat Huet with a wrist shot with 7:52

remaining in the period.

The Blue Jackets have dropped four of their last five, all by

two goals or less.

"You don't want to waste efforts like tonight," Hitchcock said.

"This is now five games in a row that we've had a great effort.

We have three points to show for it, and that's the frustrating

part. We've not been rewarded for our efforts."

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