Bruins Lose Game 4, Stanley Cup Final Now Even
The Stanley Cup Final is all tied up.
St. Louis grinded its way to a 4-2 win on Monday night at the Enterprise Center, a game in which Boston never led.
Playing from behind almost from the get-go thanks to Ryan O’Reilly’s wraparound 0:43 into regulation, the Bruins were lucky not to be down more than a goal by the time Zdeno Chara connected with Charlie Coyle in front of the crease at 13:14.
The tied game was short lived, however, when Tuukka Rask failed to kick out a rebound towards the perimeter and there was Vladimir Tarasenko crashing down the slot to give the Blues the lead back at 15:30.
Boston had the first six shots on goal of the second period, after which play evened out more. Both teams botched an opportunity on the power play, though St. Louis was rewarded a second following an exhausting stretch of zone time in which the Bruins failed to clear their defensive zone no fewer than what felt like a million times.
With all of the momentum in the world and the Enterprise Center buzzing, the Blues seemed prime to increase their lead with Connor Clifton in the penalty box for a hit to the head of Tarasenko.
And that’s when Brandon Carlo decided enough was enough.
Though he’s had an outstanding postseason in coverage on defense, the offensively-challenged blueliner hadn’t found the back of the net through 20 games of these Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Off a feed from Patrice Bergeron, who was open thanks to a nice feed from Brad Marchand along the offensive blue line, Carlo lasered a puck just past Jordan Binnington’s glove to become the 20th different member of the Bruins to score a goal this postseason, tying the game at 2-2 at 14:19 of the middle frame.
It was also the first postseason goal of Carlo’s career, period, after missing out due to injury when the Bruins made the playoffs in each of the first two seasons of his career.
The score stayed tied into the third period, at which point shots were 25-19 in favor of St. Louis.
Following 10 minutes of back-and-forth play, during which time Boston failed to cash in on a power play, O’Reilly scored his second of the game to put St. Louis ahead once again, 3-2, at 10:38 of the third.
The Blues tacked on an empty netter with under two minutes left in regulation.
Game 5 is Thursday night at the TD Garden at 8 p.m. on NBC 10 Boston