Hiller, Ducks Host Struggling Blues At Honda Center

(Sports Network) - Jonas Hiller and the Anaheim Ducks will aim for a third straight shutout when they host the struggling St. Louis Blues tonight at the Honda Center. The Ducks have won their last two games by a combined 7-0 margin and Anaheim has taken five of its last six contests overall. Hiller was in net for both shutouts, stopping 27 shots in Friday's 6-0 win over Columbus and making 37 saves Sunday against San Jose.

Hiller, who has four shutouts this season and 10 in his career, had little margin for error in the 1-0 victory over the Sharks. Bobby Ryan scored the lone goal for the Ducks, firing a shot from the right circle through traffic at the 14:29 mark of the second period. It was the 18th time he lit the lamp this season. "We didn't score as many goals as the last one and I absolutely did not want to get scored on," Hiller said. "It worked out well again. I think everybody feels good out there and so do I. We had a great team effort."

Hiller is 4-2-0 with a 3.33 goals-against average in six career starts against the Blues and has never posted a shutout versus St. Louis. Hiller, who along with Ducks forward Corey Perry were named to the All-Star Game on Tuesday, is expected to get his ninth straight start in net for Anaheim tonight. This evening's tilt marks the close of a six-game homestand for the Ducks, who are 15-7-1 as the host this season.

The Blues have lost four straight on the heels of a five-game winning streak and St. Louis has still yet to win a game in the 2011 calendar year. St. Louis was dealt a 4-3 loss Monday by the visiting Phoenix Coyotes, as Taylor Pyatt scored the go-ahead goal with 3:12 remaining in regulation at Scottrade Center. Matt D'Agostini and Brad Winchester had scored 20 seconds apart early in the third period to put St. Louis ahead 3-2, but the Coyotes pulled even when Kyle Turris beat Jaroslav Halak with a wrister from the high slot midway through the frame. Phoenix then seized the lead as Pyatt slipped the puck behind Halak on a wraparound.

Halak stopped 29 shots for the Blues, who are 12th in the West with 46 points, but are still only four points in back of Anaheim, which is tied for sixth. "There's a fine line between winning and losing and right now we're on the wrong side of it," Blues defenseman Eric Brewer said. Tonight kicks off a three-game road trip for the Blues, who have lost five of their last seven away from St. Louis and are just 6-8-4 as the guest this season.

St. Louis torched the visiting Ducks, 5-1, in the only meeting between the clubs this year on Oct. 11. D'Agostini scored twice for the Blues in that tilt and Halak needed to make just 13 saves for the win. The Blues have won two straight in this series, but Anaheim has still taken four of seven and seven of the last 11 encounters. St. Louis has also lost five out of six in Anaheim.

For more information on tonight's game, be sure to read Anaheim Calling.

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