ST. LOUIS — Alex Ovechkin scored his 30th goal of the season but the St. Louis Blues came back to beat the Washington Capitals 5-2 on Thursday night.
Ovechkin’s first-period goal snapped a six-game drought and tied him with Mike Gartner as the only players in NHL history to begin their careers with 14 straight 30-goal seasons. Gartner scored 30 or more in his first 15 seasons for Washington, the Minnesota North Stars, the New York Rangers and Toronto from 1979-94.
Alex Pietrangelo had a goal and an assist for the Blues, who stopped a two-game skid. Colton Parayko, Oskar Sundqvist, Robert Thomas and Tyler Bozak also scored, and Jake Allen made 23 saves.
Brett Connolly scored for the Capitals, who had won five road games in a row. Braden Holtby had 37 saves but lost to St. Louis for the first time in his career (7-1-0).
Parayko’s power-play goal tied it at 2 with 7:37 left in the second period. That ended an 0-for-21 slump with the man advantage for the Blues on home ice spanning seven games.
Sundqvist gave St. Louis a 3-2 lead with a diving sweep of a rebound off Pietrangelo’s shot from the point with 3:27 remaining in the second.
Pietrangelo and Bozak added insurance goals in the third.
Thomas deflected Bortuzzo’s slap shot past Holtby at the four-minute mark of the first to give the Blues a 1-0 lead.
After Ovechkin tied it, Connolly gave the Capitals a 2-1 advantage three minutes into the second, poking a rebound of his own shot past Allen.
NOTES: Blues RW Vladimir Tarasenko (illness) did not play. . Capitals C Evgeny Kuznetsov is one point shy of 300 for his career. . The Blues acquired G Jared Coreau from the Anaheim Ducks for future considerations. Coreau was assigned to San Antonio of the American Hockey League. . Capitals RW Dmitrij Jaskin played for the Blues from 2012-18.
Capitals: At the Dallas Stars on Friday.
Blues: Host the New York Islanders on Saturday.
More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
Joe Harris, The Associated Press