Vladimir Tarasenko scored a hat trick to lead the St. Louis Blues to a 4-1 victory against the Minnesota Wild Saturday afternoon in St. Louis. The victory evens the best-of-7 playoff series at 1-1.
Tarasenko scored two goals in the first period and scored his last one, an empty-netter, in the closing minute of the game, according to the Associated Press.
Patrik Berglund also scored for the Blues, and Jake Allen made 24 saves for his first playoff victory.
Marco Scandella scored Minnesota's only goal and Devan Dubnyk made 23 saves.
Tarasenko had the first score of the game at 14:18 into the first period. The second came on a power play with 1:59 left in the period after he banked a shot in off Dubnyk, who had moved off the near post, for a 2-0 lead, according to NHL.com.
After a scoreless second period, the Wild cut the lead to 2-1 at 1:46 of the third on a slap shot by Scandella, which broke his stick. Minnesota tried furiously to tie the game.
But the Star Tribune notes that Allen made several key saves for St. Louis, including one big one with 8:37 left in the third, when a wrist shot from Charlie Coyle hit the cross bar, bounced off Allen's back and David Backes saved the puck from going into the net.
Berglund gave the Blues a 3-1 lead with 1:58 left after stealing puck in the neutral zone and beating Dubnyk with a wrist shot.
Tarasenko completed his hat trick with an empty-net goal with 16.1 seconds remaining.
The outcome was a bit of a disappointment after the Wild came out strong in Game 1 and beat the Blues 4-2 on Thursday night.
The series now moves to St. Paul, with Game 3 scheduled for Monday at 7 p.m.