COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Seth Jones scored twice in the second period and Sergei Bobrovsky returned from an illness to make 22 saves as the Columbus Blue Jackets beat the Detroit Red Wings 3-2 on Friday night.
Matt Calvert also scored for the surging Blue Jackets, who have won four in a row and remain firmly in the Eastern Conference playoff picture with 13 games to go. Columbus swept a back-to-back, surpassed New Jersey to grab the first wild-card spot and moved to within two points of Philadelphia for third place in the Metropolitan Division.
Darren Helm and Andreas Athanasiou scored, and Jared Coreau, in just his second start of the season, had 33 stops for the reeling Red Wings, losers of six straight.
The Blue Jackets started with a short-handed goal near the end of the first period when Alexander Wennberg carried the puck around the back of the net and chipped it out to Calvert, who poked it by Coreau.
The lead didn’t last long. Just 21 seconds later, Helm caught Bobrovsky leaning the wrong way and got an easy goal to make it 1-1.
Columbus went back up early in the second period when Jones — who won the game with an overtime goal Thursday night — rifled in a shot from the left circle off a sweet cross-ice pass from Artemi Panarin. Jones struck again at 8:15 in when he put back Boone Jenner’s rebound.
Athanasiou beat Bobrovsky between the pads late in the third period to make it 3-2. Helm had a potential tying shot in the final seconds, but Bobrovsky made a nifty save to preserve the win.
NOTES: Jones has five goals and five saves in the last eight games. … Panarin has seven points in his last four games. … Bobrovsky missed two games with illness during which backup Joonas Korpisalo picked up a pair of wins. … Healthy scratches for Columbus included D Scott Harrington, D Taylor Chorney, F Markus Hannikainen and F Lukas Sedlak. … Detroit F Frans Nielsen missed his second game with an injury. Other scratches included F David Booth and D Xavier Ouellet.
Detroit: Plays at San Jose on Monday.
Columbus: Hosts Montreal on Monday.
More AP NHL hockey at https://apnews.com/tag/NHLhockey
Follow Mitch Stacy at http://twitter.com/mitchstacy