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Kreider's late goal helps Rangers down Blue Jackets

Kreider's late goal helps Rangers down Blue Jackets
Image Credit: Twitter (@NYRangers)

Chris Kreider scored the tiebreaking goal with 3:11 remaining in the third period and the New York Rangers beat the host Columbus Blue Jackets 3-1 on Friday night. The Rangers won their season-high fourth straight game and won for the fifth time in six games thanks to Kreider, who scored his seventh goal in the last nine games.

Kreider scored after the Rangers kept the puck in the offensive zone for most of a power play after the Blue Jackets got called for having too many men on the ice. The decisive sequence started when defenseman Adam Fox's shot from the right circle sailed over the net and banked off the end boards. The puck ricocheted to Mika Zibanejad at the red line and he backhanded the puck to Kreider, who encountered little defensive pressure and one-timed the pass into the net for his 23rd goal.

Pavel Buchnevich scored 22 seconds into the game and Ryan Strome added an empty-net goal as the Rangers also won their fifth straight road game. Oliver Bjorkstrand, who scored twice in the Blue Jackets' 2-1 win in New York on Jan. 19, tallied for Columbus, which dropped its fourth straight game (0-2-2). The Blue Jackets also allowed the winning goal shortly after Boone Jenner's shot went off the post on a short-handed breakaway.

With rookie Igor Shesterkin still nursing an ankle injury from a collision in the crease Tuesday in Winnipeg, New York goaltender Alexandar Georgiev made 36 saves, including 21 in the second period. Blue Jackets rookie goalie Elvis Merzlikins stopped 25 shots.

The Rangers sped out to a 1-0 lead when Buchnevich's deflection of defenseman Jacob Trouba's point shot went past Merzlikins' glove. Columbus was unable to score during a four-minute power play when Buchnevich has assessed a hooking and an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty for arguing the offensive zone penalty with 12:36 left in the second. The Blue Jackets scored with 68 seconds left in the second when Bjorkstrand backhanded the rebound of defenseman Scott Harrington's shot over Georgiev's glove and off the crossbar.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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