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article imageSt. Louis ousts champion Blackhawks from Stanley Cup playoffs

By Marcus Hondro     Apr 26, 2016 in Sports
It has been a long time coming for the St. Louis Blues, but they finally move on to the second round. The Blues did it in dramatic fashion Monday night with a game seven win over the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks.
Blues eliminate Blackhawks
After the Hawks came from a 3-1 deficit to win Game Six, 6-3 in Chicago on Saturday, tying the series at 3 after the Blues had led it three games to one, most pundits predicted the Hawks would prevail on St. Louis ice tonight. But the Blues used a structured system and a bushel of desire to beat Chicago, 3-2, and set the stage for a second round match-up with
They also used a tremendous second-effort from former-Hawk Troy Brouwer, who won it all with Chicago in 2010. With 11:29 left in the third, Brouwer took a pass from Robby Fabbri in front of the net and slid it toward the goal — only to see it hit the post and squeak back out.
Hawk goalie Cory Crawford was prone over by the right post and Brouwer had half an empty net. However, at first he missed the rebound, unable to angle his stick flat on the ice, his blade passed overtop the puck; but Brouwer managed to try a third time and backhanded it along the ice into the net before a Hawk defenceman, or Crawford, could reach him.
St. Louis: early lead
The Blues again did not make it easy upon themselves Monday. They took a 2-0 lead in the first, including a goal at the one-minute mark from Jori Lehtera and another at 13:43 from Colton Parayko. But playoff veteran Marian Hossa cut the lead in half with a minute-and-a-half left in the period before Andrew Shaw tied it early in the second, setting the stage for Brouwer's third period heroics.
It was Brower's first playoff goal in his last 24 playoff games. Incredibly, Brouwer has now played in seven consecutive playoff series that have gone to a seventh game, with the Washington Capitals and before that Chicago; it was the first point he registered in any of them.
It was the first playoff round win for St. Louis since 2011-12 season; prior to that season, the Blues had not won a round in the Stanley Cup playoffs since the 2001-02 season when they beat the Blackhawks in five games before losing to Detroit. By contrast, Chicago came into the series having won the Stanley Cup in three of the past six seasons.
Chicago outshot St. Louis, 33-26, but Brian Elliot was again sharp in the Blues net. For most St. Louis players, like defenceman Jay Bouwmeester, in his 14th NHL season, it will be their first time in the second-round. St. Louis now meets the Dallas Stars, who beat the Minnesota Wild in six games.
The crowd of 19,935 were treated to a classic playoff game. They may have had their hearts in their throats with 3:30 left in the third when Brent Seabrook rang a shot off of both St. Louis posts.
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