for this game

LaCosta shines in second career start as Blue Jackets win

Feb 11, 2009 - 5:13 AM
COLUMBUS, Ohio (Ticker) -- Being led by a rookie goaltender has become old news for the Columbus Blue Jackets. But even with Steve Mason sidelined, the trend continued.

Dan LaCosta made 31 saves in his second career start and Andrew Murray snapped a scoreless tie early in the third period as the Blue Jackets posted a 3-0 victory over the Colorado Avalanche on Tuesday.

Jason Williams and Fredrik Modin also tallied and defenseman Jan Hejda recorded two assists for Columbus, which has won two in a row following a three-game losing streak.

"It was a great team effort," LaCosta said. "I didn't feel that great at the start. We played so good there in the first, they never really had any chances. It gave me a chance to get in the game and get focused. Everyone really did a great job tonight."

Recalled from Syracuse of the American Hockey League on Friday in the wake of Mason and backup Wade Dubielewicz both suffering from various ailments, LaCosta turned aside four shots in the first period, 13 in the second and 14 in the third to post his first career shutout.

"It's pretty surreal," LaCosta said. "This time last week, if someone would have told me this would have happened, I would have said 'no chance.' It's great right now, and I'm just going to enjoy it as much as I can."

Peter Budaj made 27 saves for the Avalanche, who have lost six of their last seven meetings with the Blue Jackets.

"The first period, we weren't really good and our goalie kept us in it," Colorado coach Tony Granato said. "The second period, I thought we played way better. It looked like we got our legs and started to play the way we wanted to.

"And (LaCosta) was good. Did we get enough screen shots on him, enough rebounds? No, but he made a few pretty darn good saves. He was good, but we didn't play 60 minutes."

The 20-year-old Mason has been spectacular in his first season in the NHL, posting a 19-12-2 record with a league-leading seven shutouts. The front-runner for the Calder Trophy, Mason also is tops with a 2.09 goals-against average and ranks sixth with a .923 save percentage.

However, Columbus' third-round pick in 2006 was placed on injured reserve with mononucleosis on Saturday. Dubielewicz, meanwhile, has been battling the flu this week.

Considering his goaltending situation, Blue Jackets coach Ken Hitchcock was forced to start the 22-year-old LaCosta again, just three nights after he made 28 saves in a 3-2 overtime win over the Western Conference-leading San Jose Sharks.

"Everybody is so excited for him. He played solid again," Hitchcock said. "He's a big guy that moves around the net really well. I thought he looked better today than he did the last game. He had more activity today than he did in the game against San Jose. He had to make saves today, more than he did against San Jose."

LaCosta was not tested early in this contest, as Columbus outshot Colorado, 16-4, in the first period.

Murray appeared to give the Blue Jackets a lead with 4:08 left in the opening session, but his goal was disallowed after reviews showed he batted the puck past Budaj with his hand during a scrum in front of the net.

"It was more of a reactionary thing," Murray said. "I was going to the net and the rebound kind of (bounced) off the goalie. More or less, it was just going right at my head, so I just kind of put my hand out."

Budaj was just as impressive as LaCosta throughout the first 40 minutes of play but fizzled in the final period as the Avalanche were handed their second straight loss.

Murray finally gave LaCosta all the support he needed 2:29 into the third, firing a wrist shot past Budaj from the doorstep.

"I just tried to take it to the net there," Murray said. "There wasn't much room there. I just kind of dribbled through, and I don't know if he thought I was going to cut in a little bit more. He came off his post a little bit. It's one of those things - you put it on net and hope for the best."

Williams doubled the advantage at 9:43 by wristing the puck by Budaj from the right faceoff circle. Modin secured Columbus' first season-series sweep of Colorado by deflecting in Hejda's shot while positioned in front of the crease with 7:44 left.

"We had a lot of good scoring chances, kept playing pucks towards the net," Williams said. "(Budaj) played really well and made some good saves to keep them in it."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COLORADO 0 0 0 0
    COLUMBUS 0 0 3 3 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: NONE
    3RD PRD: COB - ANDREW MURRAY 6 (RAFFI TORRES, JAN HEJDA) 2:29
    COB - JASON WILLIAMS 11 (JAKUB VORACEK, JASON CHIMERA) 9:43
    COB - FREDRIK MODIN 9 (JAN HEJDA, R.J. UMBERGER) 12:16
    POWER-PLAY CONVERSION

    Feb 10 9:23 PM


  • NHL
    COLORADO 0
    COLUMBUS 3
    3RD PRD: COB - FREDRIK MODIN 9 (JAN HEJDA, R.J. UMBERGER) 12:16

    Avalanche 0, Blue Jackets 3  3rd - 7:44Feb 10 9:11 PM


  • NHL
    COLORADO 0
    COLUMBUS 2
    3RD PRD: COB - JASON WILLIAMS 11 (JAKUB VORACEK, JASON CHIMERA) 9:43

    Avalanche 0, Blue Jackets 2  3rd - 10:17Feb 10 9:04 PM
  • 0
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    RUWTbot Took away 24 roots

    Avalanche 0, Blue Jackets 2  3rd - 10:17Feb 10 9:04 PM
  • 24
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    RUWTbot Added 24 roots (Close Finish)

    Avalanche 0, Blue Jackets 1  3rd - 10:35Feb 10 9:00 PM


  • NHL
    COLORADO 0
    COLUMBUS 1
    3RD PRD: COB - ANDREW MURRAY 6 (RAFFI TORRES, JAN HEJDA) 2:29

    Avalanche 0, Blue Jackets 1  3rd - 17:31Feb 10 8:54 PM
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    RUWTbot Took away 16 roots

    Avalanche 0, Blue Jackets 1  3rd - 17:31Feb 10 8:54 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COLORADO 0 0 0
    COLUMBUS 0 0 0 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    2ND PRD: NONE
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COL 4 13 17
    COB 16 3 19
    GOALIES: COL - PETER BUDAJ
    COB - DAN LACOSTA

    Feb 10 8:33 PM
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    RUWTbot Added 16 roots

    Avalanche 0, Blue Jackets 0  2nd - 7:43Feb 10 8:20 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COLORADO 0 0
    COLUMBUS 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NONE
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    COL 4 4
    COB 16 16
    GOALIES: COL - PETER BUDAJ
    COB - DAN LACOSTA

    Feb 10 7:42 PM