Originally posted on Fox Sports Midwest  |  Last updated 11/27/11
COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- David Backes scored a power-play goal in the third period to lift the St. Louis Blues past the Columbus Blue Jackets 2-1 on Sunday night, giving coach Ken Hitchcock the win in his first game against his former club. Hitchcock, the winningest coach all-time for Columbus, guided the Blue Jackets to their only playoff berth in 2009 before being fired a season later. Kris Russell, who traded from the Blue Jackets earlier this month, also scored to help St. Louis improve to 7-1-2 since Hitchcock replaced Davis Payne on Nov. 6. Brian Elliott made 23 saves for the Blues to move to 10-1-0 this season. Derek Dorsett scored, Curtis Sanford made 27 saves -- losing for the first time in six starts -- and Columbus had its five-game points streak snapped. Tied 1-all entering the final period, the Blues' league-worst power play came through at 7:49. T.J. Oshie flicked a backhand pass from the left edge of the crease to a wide-open Backes for his ninth goal of the season. It was St. Louis' first man-advantage tally in six games. Columbus had plenty of chances throughout, including a power play of its own just a few minutes later, but a hooking penalty by Fedor Tyutin -- his third minor infraction of the game -- negated the opportunity. Elliot was steady the rest of the way, stopping Antoine Vermette on a 2-on-1, shorthanded break with just over 5 minutes left. Then with Sanford off for an extra attacker, Elliott blocked Rick Nash's doorstep stab. In a mostly tight-checking game with little room to maneuver, Dorsett broke in alone, compliments of a Samuel Pahlsson steal at center ice, and beat Elloitt at 5:06 of the second period to put Columbus on the board first. Later in the period, the Blue Jackets marched up the ice on a 3-on-1 after a miscue by Barret Jackman. Nash slid the puck to Carter, but his shot was blocked by a sprawling Roman Polak. Skating four aside, Steen shook his coverage and powered around the right side, strong-arming a shot on goal. His rebound off Sanford came to Russell near the crease for the quick putback with 8 seconds remaining in the period. The best scoring chance of the first period came off the stick of Rick Nash on a semi-breakaway, stopped by Elliott. Notes: Russell was traded on Nov. 11 to the Blues in exchange for D Nikita Nikitan. Russell has three goals and an assist, while Nikita has five assists in eight games each with their new teams. ... Hitchcock has posted the best 10-game start for a new Blues coach in franchise history, ahead of Joel Quenneville, Red Berenson, Andy Murray, Mike Keenan, and Al Arbour. ... G Steve Mason served as Sanford's backup after missing the last three games with a concussion. ... Blue Jackets RW Jared Boll played in his 300th NHL game.
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