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Avs Offense Explodes For 5-2 Win Over Edmonton

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(credit: ColoradoAvalanche.com)

(credit: ColoradoAvalanche.com)

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DENVER (AP) — Stefan Elliott scored his first NHL goal, Semyon Varlamov had 31 saves and the Colorado Avalanche beat the Edmonton Oilers 5-2 on Saturday night.

Paul Stastny, Shane O’Brien, Jan Heda and Jay McClement had a goal each, and Ryan O’Reilly, Milan Hejduk and Chuck Kobasew had two assists apiece as the Avalanche snapped a two-game home skid.

Ryan Jones had a goal and an assist, Ladislav Smid also had a goal and Devan Dubnyk had 24 saves for Edmonton.

The Avalanche trailed 2-1 before exploding for four goals in the third period. They scored two goals in a 1:58 span early in the frame to take the lead. They tied it with O’Brien’s power-play goal, his first of the season, and Elliot made it 3-2 with his first NHL goal with 11:56 left.

Heda scored his second goal of the season with 3:40 left, and Stastny added an empty net goal with 1:53 remaining to seal it. It was his seventh goal of the season.

Jones broke a 1-1 tie when he scored on a rebound 2:24 into the second period, his sixth goal of the season.

Smid gave Edmonton a 1-0 lead with his first goal in nearly two years. Jones carried the puck deep into the Colorado zone and drew Varlamov out of position. The goalie scrambled to get back into the crease but skated into O’Brien, and Smid scored into an unguarded net 2:59 into the game.

The Avalanche got even when McClement scored 1:36 later. Kobasew brought the puck into the Edmonton zone but Dubnyk made the save. The rebound came out to McClement, who shot it over a sprawled-out Dubnyk for his third goal of the season.

The Oilers suffered a blow when left wing Taylor Hall left the game after suffering a left shoulder injury in the first period. Hall, the first overall pick in the 2010 draft, has seven goals and 18 assists in 22 games this season.

Notes: Smid’s last goal came Dec. 5, 2009, a span of 124 games. … Colorado has allowed just two power-play goals in the last 24 chances. … Oilers LW Ryan Smyth had his six-game point streak snapped.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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