Mark Scheifele completes hat trick to lead Jets over Devils

WINNIPEG — Mark Scheifele had a hat trick to snap a personal seven-game goalless skid and lead the Winnipeg Jets to an 8-4 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Friday night.

Scheifele completed the hat trick when he scored on a one-timer on a pass from captain Blake Wheeler at the 9:36 mark of the third period to give Winnipeg a 7-4 lead.

Nikolaj Ehlers also broke out of a five-game goalless streak with two of his own for Winnipeg (11-8-4), while Kristian Vesalainen, Josh Morrissey and Adam Lowry also scored.

Goalie Connor Hellebuyck made 33 saves on 37 shots for the win.

Nico Hischier and Ryan Graves both scored to give New Jersey (9-8-4) a 4-3 lead by the 1:16 mark of the second period. Jack Hughes and Damon Severson had first-period goals.

Devils goalie Jonathan Bernier, who made 26 saves on 32 shots, was replaced by Mackenzie Blackwood to start the third period. Blackwood stopped 6-of-8 shots.

After blowing a 3-0 lead, the Jets took a 6-4 lead into the third period.

After Hischier and Graves gave New Jersey its brief lead, Ehlers tied the score at 4-4 with his second goal of the game at the 10:39 mark of the second period.

He converted a pass from centre Pierre-Luc Dubois. Andrew Copp, with his 100th career assist, had the other helper.

Morrissey had given Winnipeg a 5-4 lead when his point shot trickled in off a player in front of Bernier. Wheeler and Scheifele assisted.

Scheifele scored his second of the game on the power play with six seconds left in the middle frame. He took a pass from defenceman Neal Pionk, skated the length of the ice and finished it off by beating Bernier. Hellebuyck also assisted,

Scheifele had opened the scoring just 1:52 into the game. He took a pass from Pionk, stickhandled past the defence, then backhanded a shot over Bernier’s right shoulder.

Vesalainen converted a perfect setup by forward Paul Stastny at the 7:39 mark. Ehlers scored his first of the night when he snapped a shot over Bernier’s left shoulder.

Severson beat Hellebuyck over his right shoulder from inside the face-off circle at 8:08 of the first. The power-play goal was set up by forward Tomas Tatar and defenceman Ty Smith.

Hughes scored with just 24 seconds left in the opening frame when he pounced on a rebound in front of Hellebuyck. Graves and Dougie Hamilton had the helpers.

Winnipeg will play host to the Toronto Maple Leafs on Sunday, the same day the Winnipeg Blue Bombers host the West Final versus the Saskatchewan Roughriders. Wheeler is scheduled to play his 1,000th NHL game on Sunday.

The Devils return home to host the Ottawa Senators on Monday.

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