St. Paul, MN (SportsNetwork.com) - Devan Dubnyk stopped 30 shots and the Minnesota Wild advanced with a 4-1 win over the St. Louis Blues in Game 6 of their Western Conference quarterfinal matchup.
The Wild won a playoff series for just the fourth time in team history and will next face the Chicago Blackhawks in a rematch of one of last year's semifinal matchups, which Chicago won in six games.
"It's an awesome feeling that we have going right now," said Dubnyk. "This feels right as a group in where we are and what we've accomplished. We feel like we're going to win every time we go out there and hopefully we can keep doing that."
Zach Parise scored twice, while Justin Fontaine and Nino Niederreiter also lit the lamp in the victory for Minnesota, which finished just two points behind Chicago in the Central Division.
"It feels good to contribute and most importantly be a part of that win," said Parise. "We talked about being patient and waiting for our opportunities, and I thought we did a good job of that."
T.J. Oshie had the only goal of the game for the Blues, who failed to make it out of the first round for a third straight postseason.
Jake Allen got the start in net, but was yanked in the second period after allowing two goals on 13 shots. Brian Elliott turned aside 6-of-7 shots in relief.
"I thought our best games were our last three," said St. Louis head coach Ken Hitchcock. "We didn't play very well in the first couple of games, and I thought we got a lot better after that. But, we win as a team and lose as a team. We played hard those last three games, but we lost."
Shortly after a Minnesota power play expired, the Blues were awarded a power play of their own after Fontaine was whistled for tripping 6:31 into the game.
It was the Wild, though, who took advantage as Parise picked off a pass in his own zone and skated the other way. Going down the left wing, he fought his way past Kevin Shattenkirk and from a sharp angle got a shot on net that Allen couldn't stop for a 1-0 lead at 7:14 of the first.
Dubnyk needed to stop just four shots in the first period to keep the Blues off the board, and the Wild made it a 2-0 game at 11:19 of the second.
Fontaine picked up the puck in the neutral zone and skated through the middle before drifting over to the right circle, where his shot along the ice made its way between the pads of Allen.
Hitchcock immediately yanked Allen and put in Elliott after the goal.
The Blues were finally able to get on the board with just 1.8 seconds left on the second-period clock. Alex Pietrangelo sent the puck from the right point to the left, where Shattenkirk blasted it on net. The puck was deflected, but Oshie picked it up at the right side and was able to sneak it in.
Minnesota, though, got the goal back just 61 seconds into the third, as a rush play saw Mikael Granlund skate the puck in down the right wing and slip a short pass to Jason Pominville, who got a shot on net that Elliott stopped. Parise, however, was able to backhand in the rebound.
St. Louis put 12 shots on Dubnyk in the final frame, but were unable to establish consistent pressure, and Niederreiter put the series away with an empty-net goal inside of two minutes to play.
It will be the third straight postseason matchup between Chicago and Minnesota. The Blackhawks eliminated the Wild in five games in the first round of the 2013 playoffs ... This was the first-ever playoff series between Minnesota and St. Louis ... Minnesota lost its first three games against Chicago in the regular season, but won the final two meetings.