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NHL Game Summary - Vancouver at Colorado

Nov 5, 2010 - 3:59 AM
Denver, CO (Sports Network) - Cory Schneider was sharp with 33 saves and the Vancouver Canucks used three power-play goals to defeat the Colorado Avalanche, 3-1, at Pepsi Center.

Schneider, in his 14th career start, was several minutes away from his first shutout for the streaking Canucks, who have won five straight games and extended their lead atop the Northwest Division to three points over Colorado.

"It was in the back of my mind, but I'd rather give up the goal and get the win," said Schneider. "It's good to get a start and get a bit of rhythm in my game."

Ryan Kesler, Henrik Sedin and Raffi Torres scored in the victory.

Peter Budaj allowed three goals on 36 shots for the Avalanche, who saw their two-game win streak halted and fell to 2-3-1 in their last six overall. Colorado, which had not played since Saturday, will continue its four-game homestand on Saturday against Dallas.

David Van der Gulik scored his first NHL goal in the losing effort.

After Kesler's fifth goal -- a successful wrist shot from the right circle -- opened the scoring 3:14 into the game, the Canucks again converted on the power play at nearly the same time in the middle session.

"We were trying to generate more offense off the rush," said Kesler. "I had some room on the wing and I was able to pop it in."

Paul Stastny was whistled for hooking at 2:49 of the second and the visitors went to work in their offensive zone. Christian Ehrhoff's shot from the right point missed the net wide before it caromed off the rear boards. Sedin followed the disc carefully and punched it home from the left post 44 seconds into the power play.

A rookie mistake by Avs blueliner Kevin Shattenkirk, who made his NHL debut in the game, led to Vancouver's third goal. Shattenkirk, who was drafted 14th overall by Colorado in 2007, shot the puck over the glass and thus went to the box for the delay-of-game minor.

During the ensuing man-advantage, Torres notched his seventh goal of the campaign. A wrist shot from the right point by Aaron Rome was redirected past Budaj by Torres from the top of the crease 4:03 into the final stanza.

With 3:08 to go in regulation, a scramble in front during a delayed penalty led to a backhander by Van der Gulik from the low slot which Schneider failed to stop.

Budaj was pulled after the Van der Gulik goal in favor of the extra attacker, but the Vancouver defense corps blocked several shots and Schneider stood tall to preserve the victory.