ST. LOUIS (Ticker) -- The Vancouver Canucks forced a seventh game in their Western Conference quarterfinal series, building a three-goal lead before holding on for a 4-3 victory over the St. Louis Blues.
After losing three of the first four games, Vancouver has won two in a row to send the best-of-seven series back to GM Place for the decisive contest on Tuesday.
Canucks captain Markus Naslund collected a goal and two assists, doubling his output from the first five games. Vancouver also got power-play tallies from Henrik Sedin and defenseman Ed Jovanovski before withstanding a furious third-period comeback.
"We played a strong game again, getting stronger as the games go on," Naslund said. "Obviously, we're getting stronger and more confident. But it's one game that's going to decide it."
St. Louis outshot the Canucks, 13-2, over the final 20 minutes and climbed within a goal on power-play tallies by Eric Boguniecki and Doug Weight.
But Dan Cloutier denied Scott Mellanby on a backhander from the left faceoff circle with just under five minutes to play and stopped Cory Stillman's shot from high in the right circle with 12.6 seconds remaining.
"We didn't play the game that was necessary, be it energy, be it thought process, emotion, and it got us behind the eight-ball and it was too big of a gap to get back into it," Blues coach Joel Quenneville said.
Only 16 times has a team overcome a three games to one deficit to win a best-of-seven playoff series. Vancouver has done it twice, defeating Winnipeg in the 1992 Smythe Division semifinals and Calgary in the 1994 conference quarterfinals.
"I always said I don't think momentum carries from game to game, but I think that our team is definitely playing better," Canucks defenseman Mattias Ohlund said. "We showed signs of it in Game Four, got some results in Game Five, tonight we got more results. ... It starts all over again on Tuesday night."
Coming off a 5-3 win in Game Five, Vancouver needed less than four minutes to grab the lead as Naslund banked a shot off defenseman Alex Khavanov while sliding on his back past the right goalpost. The puck caromed past Osgood for Naslund's third goal of the series.
"I think he's playing with more confidence with the puck right now," Canucks coach Marc Crawford said. "He's captured the pace of the game. When those skilled players capture the pace when they get the puck, they know what to do with it."
Ohlund nearly made it 2-0 at 6:38, but his shot from the bottom of the left circle hit both goalposts and stayed out.
Weight tied it just over four minutes later with the first of St. Louis' three power-play tallies, but Ohlund got one that counted and put Vancouver ahead for good with 5:35 to go in the period.
The Canucks dominated the second period, outshooting the Blues, 12-5, and scoring twice on the power play to pull away. Henrik Sedin got his first goal of the series at 8:52, stuffing a rebound past Osgood just before he was cross-checked by defenseman Bryce Salvador.
"We wanted to come with an aggressive forecheck, have good special teams. We did that," said Jovanovski, who padded the lead with 3:48 to go in the period.
The third period belonged to the Blues. They got within 4-2 on the power play at 6:21 as Boguniecki sliced down the slot, got a pass from Weight at the edge of the left circle and snapped a quick backhander over Cloutier's left shoulder.
An interference penalty on Ohlund put St. Louis back on the power play and Scott Mellanby faked a shot from the left circle to freeze Cloutier and the defense before finding a wide-open Weight on the other side of the ice.
"We can beat anyone when we play 5-on-5, but you have to do a little more of it," said Weight, who has five goals and seven assists in the series.
"Obviously, we wanted to finish it off tonight. It was a case of too little, too late for us, took too many penalties," added Osgood, who stopped 22 shots. "They capitalized and it was too late, reminiscent of the last game."