Wild top Devils, stop losing streak

Sports

Zach Parise scored the tiebreaking power-play goal against his former team early in the second period and the visiting Minnesota Wild stopped a four-game losing streak with a 4-2 victory over the New Jersey Devils Saturday afternoon.

Feb 9, 2019; Newark, NJ, USA; Minnesota Wild left wing Zach Parise (11) celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal during the second period against the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center. Mandatory Credit: Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports

Parise scored his second career goal in nine games against New Jersey since joining the Wild as a free agent in July 2012. He scored his 22nd goal of the season 4:34 into the second period when he tipped a slap shot by defenseman Ryan Suter from the right point into the net.

Marcus Foligno added a goal and an assist as the Wild avoided matching their longest losing streak of the season and won for the first time since losing Mikko Koivu to a season-ending knee injury earlier this week.

Joel Erikkson Ek, who was called up from the minors to replace Koivu, scored for the second straight game as the Wild rebounded from a flat effort in Thursday’s 4-1 home loss to the Edmonton Oilers. Luke Kunin added an insurance tally in the third and Brett Seney and Jesper Bratt scored for the Devils, whose home losing streak reached five games (0-4-1). The Devils also dropped to 2-6-1 in their last nine contests since getting an 8-5 win over the Chicago Blackhawks on Jan. 14.

Devan Dubnyk made 16 saves and improved to 7-2-1 in his last 10 outings.

Cory Schneider made his second straight start since returning from an abdominal injury and remained winless in the regular season since Dec. 27, 2017. Since beating the Detroit Red Wings, Schneider is 0-16-4 in his last 23 regular-season appearances.

The Devils opened the scoring 6:57 into the game when Seney took a pass from Will Butcher in the defensive zone, skated unimpeded through the neutral zone and lifted a wrist shot over Dubnyk from the low slot as Minnesota defenseman Nick Seeler backed off.

Minnesota tied the game on a highlight-reel play by Foligno a little over five minutes later.

Greg Pateryn’s shot went wide but the Devils could not clear during a scramble near the crease and the puck caromed behind the net. Foligno went to retrieve it by the right side of the net, moved to the left side and easily lifted a backhander over Schneider.

After Parise scored, Erikkson Ek made it a two-goal lead by sweeping a rebound into the vacated right side of the net.

The Devils made it a one-goal game when Bratt swept a backhander into the net with 16:04 left but Kunin lifted a wrist shot by Schneider less than four minutes later.

—Field Level Media

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