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Associated Press
11/17/2006 10:49:16 PM


COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) - Peter Budaj took full advantage of his first start since Nov. 2.

Budaj made 25 saves for his third career shutout and the Colorado Avalanche beat the struggling Columbus Blue Jackets 3-0 Friday night to snap a four-game losing streak.

"It's always great when a goalie gets a shutout," said Budaj, who helped his team improve to 20-0-1-1 against Columbus. "Our team made a tremendous effort tonight. We capitalized on our chances. We did the little things right."

Rookie Paul Stastny, Ossi Vaananen and Marek Svatos scored for Colorado. Joe Sakic, playing in his 18th season, had an assist to tie Stan Mikita for 14th on the career list with 926.

"We basically had the puck a lot tonight," said Avalanche coach Joel Quenneville. "We checked, moved together well."

The Blue Jackets, who have been shut out in five of their 17 games, have lost four straight and 11 of 14.

The game was the second for Columbus interim coach Gary Agnew, who replaced Gerard Gallant after Gallant was fired Monday because of the team's slow start. Agnew lost his debut Wednesday against Nashville.

"We weren't paying the price to score," Agnew said. "We were not going to the paint. When you are going wide on a team you need to put pucks on the net and fight for a rebound."

Stastny opened the scoring with his fourth at 7:29 of the first period on a Colorado power play.

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