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HOCKEY

Elliot, Blues blank Predators

Brian Elliott registered his second shutout in as many games, while Alexander Steen netted the game's only goal late in the second period in the surging St. Louis Blues' 1-0 triumph over the Nashville Predators at Bridgestone Arena.

Elliott, named the NHL's Second Star of the Week on Monday after posting a 1.45 goals against average in three St. Louis wins, wasn't tested much in a 15-save performance against an injury-riddled Nashville squad that's now dropped four straight games and has gone 1-5-2 since March 28.

The Blues, on the other hand, have now ripped off a season-high five consecutive victories and further enhanced their chances of securing a berth in the upcoming Western Conference playoffs.

"The Detroit game (a 1-0 win on Sunday) was a little tougher to get the shutout, but it really doesn't matter," Elliott said. "You always just want to beat them by whatever. Obviously, you just want the 'W.'"

Steen's blast with 3:23 remaining in the second period was the lone blemish on Pekka Rinne, with the Nashville netminder accumulating 25 saves but receiving little offensive support.

Neither team mounted much of an attack during a scoreless first period that contained a mere 10 shots combined, and the contest remained deadlocked after Rinne turned back nine St. Louis chances as the Blues controlled the action over the first five-plus minutes of the second.

St. Louis finally broke through with just under 3 1/2 minutes left in the middle session, capitalizing on an odd-man rush in which Steen skated hard up the left side before firing a long drive that Rinne couldn't get down quickly enough to block.

The goal was all the Blues needed to extend their unbeaten run, as the punchless Predators managed only five shots in the third period and never put forth a serious threat.

"We can't sustain any offense and it is tough to get any shots," said Predators defenseman and captain Shea Weber. "Everything we've got has been from the outside and we really did not have very many good scoring chances."

St. Louis was also not whistled for a penalty over the course of the full 60 minutes of play.

Game Notes

The Blues last won five in a row from March 3-11 of last season ... Forward Andy McDonald returned to the Blues' lineup after missing Sunday's win at Detroit with the flu ... The Predators recalled forward Daniel Bang from Milwaukee of the AHL prior to the game, with the rookie making his NHL debut in place of Brandon Yip, who was scratched after suffering a lower-body injury Sunday at Chicago ... St. Louis improved to 11-4-2 in one-goal games this season.