ST. LOUIS — The bragging rights belong to Jake Allen.
The St. Louis Blues goalie stopped all 26 shots he faced for his sixth career shutout on Tuesday night in a 2-0 victory against his friend and former teammate, Ben Bishop, and the Tampa Bay Lightning at Scottrade Center.
“A shutout always makes it a little bit better,” Allen said, “but we got the win and I thought he played really well too. It was a good battle by both teams.”
Teammates for two seasons (2010-11, 2011-12) with the Peoria Rivermen of the American Hockey League, Allen and Bishop had never matched up against each other in the NHL until Tuesday night.
“He played really well,” said Bishop, who made 22 saves. “We came up a little short but it was a pretty good game. He’s a good friend and I’m sure I will hear it until the next game. I’ve got to get the next one.”
The Blues (6-2-1, 13 points) have now won four straight against the Lightning (5-3-2, 12 points) and six of their last seven meetings.
“Our goalie was good,” St. Louis coach Ken Hitchcock said. “… He was solid all night. He was out on top of the crease, he was aggressive. It was good to see, real good to see.”
Allen turned aside 12 shots in a first period that saw the hosts emerge with a 1-0 lead after Gomez redirected a blue-line blast from 22-year-old rookie defenseman Colton Parayko at the 15:59 mark.
“I kind of got lucky and the kid put it in the right place and I just tipped it down and beat Bishop, and that’s not easy to do,” Gomez said. “Give the kid credit. He saw it, he saw me get in that spot and he got it on net.”
The goal, assisted by Parayko and Brouwer, was the first for Gomez as a member of the Blues and the 181st of his career.
“No matter what level you’re at, it’s always nice to get a goal out of the way,” Gomez said. “Most importantly, though, we got the win. That’s a good hockey club over there, so we’ll enjoy this for a bit and go right at the next one.”
The Lightning out-shot the Blues in the first two periods and 26-24 for the game but were shut out for the second straight game.
Brouwer gave Allen a chance to relax when he added an empty-net goal with 40 seconds remaining. He now has eight points (three goals, five assists) in his first nine games with St. Louis after he was acquired the offseason trade that sent T.J. Oshie to the Washington Capitals.
“It’s always nice to see that,” Allen said of the empty-netter. “(It) takes a little bit of weight off your shoulders, especially when you have that skilled of team with 1 minute left and six on five. They are very dangerous, so it’s a good breather.”
The Blues will be back in action on Thursday night against the visiting Anaheim Ducks (1-6-2, 4 points) at Scottrade Center.
The Ducks, who lost to the Dallas Stars 4-3 on Tuesday, will be without captain Ryan Getzlaf, who was scheduled to have a non-emergency appendectomy on Wednesday.