ST. LOUIS (AP) Brandon Saad scored twice and Jordan Binnington stopped 31 shots as the St. Louis Blues beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-2 on Saturday night.

Jake Neighbours and Colton Parayko also scored for the Blues, who were coming off a loss at home to Arizona two nights earlier and won in regulation for the first time this season. Robert Thomas and Kasperi Kapanen, playing in his first game against his former team since being waived by Pittsburgh last season, each had two assists.

“After last game, we didn’t have our best game and we wanted to come out with some pace and some chances tonight and I think we did a good job of moving the puck and creating some chances,” Saad said. “As a line all night, I thought we played pretty well.”

Binnington entered the game with a 0.92 goals-against average and a .969 save percentage. He evened his career record against Pittsburgh to 3-3-1.

“I think the guys really, you know, kept the foot on the gas and continued to play the way we wanted to play the game,” Blues coach Craig Berube said. “Overall, we had real good structure in our own end, kept it to the outside for the most part, ate a lot of pucks. Played a good hockey game.”

Evgeni Malkin and Radim Zohorna scored and Tristan Jarry made 17 saves for the Penguins, who dropped both games on a brief road trip.

“We had our chances,” Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said. “Give St. Louis credit. They defended hard. They took advantage of the opportunities we gave them. You know, we gave them way too many chances off the rush because we didn’t play with the purpose that we need to play with in the offensive zone, whether it be with the puck or without it.”

The Blues took control with two goals 1:33 apart in the second period. Neighbours snapped a 1-all tie for the Blues at 5:39 as Kapanen made a nifty move around a defender and passed to him for the tap-in.

“That’s one of those ones where you just kind of watch,” Neighbours said of Kapanen. “He put on a show there. Just have my stick on the ice and go to the back post. That’s an easy one for me.”

Parayko made it 3-1 at 7:12, seconds after Jarry robbed Alexey Toropchenko of a goal. Toropchenko gathered the puck and fed it to Parayko who unleashed a booming slap shot through traffic.

Saad scored his second with 4:47 left in the third, right after Binnington made a couple of pad saves as Pittsburgh pushed to get back into the game.

“He’s been huge for us,” Saad said of Binnington. “We’ve had some tight-checking hockey games and we win by one goal. Obviously, he’s been a huge part of that. He’s making big saves, giving us confidence up front and then any goals we can collect, we can feel pretty good about it.”

Zohorna, making his season debut, scored 74 seconds later to pull the Penguins back within two.

Saad’s first goal of the year gave the Blues a 1-0 lead midway through the first period. It was the first time the Blues scored first or even led in a game this season, snapping a string of 199 minutes, 33 seconds of either being tied or losing. It was also the first time St. Louis scored in the opening period through their first four games.

Malkin tied it with just 3.7 seconds left in the first. Kris Letang’s clearing pass at the end of a penalty kill found the tape of Malkin’s stick as he was leaving the box, springing him on a breakaway and allowing him to pick the top right corner for his fourth goal in Pittsburgh’s first five games.

“We didn’t play hard enough and we didn’t play smart enough,” Sullivan said. “We got what we deserved.”


Blues prospect Dalibor Dvorsky scored a power-play goal in his Ontario Hockey League debut on Friday night for Sudbury after he was released from his Swedish Hockey League contract earlier in the week. The Blues selected Dvorsky with the No. 10 pick in the first round of this year’s draft. ... Penguins D Ryan Shea made his NHL debut.


Blues: LW Pavel Buchnevich (upper body) remains day to day. He participated in the morning skate for the first time since suffering the injury in the first period of last Saturday’s game against Seattle.


Penguins: Host Dallas on Tuesday night.

Blues: At Winnipeg on Tuesday night.



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