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ST. LOUIS (AP) - Alex Ovechkin became the 11th player in NHL history to score 50 or more goals in a season five times, and the Washington Capitals kept their slim playoff hopes alive by beating the slumping St. Louis Blues 4-1 on Tuesday night.

Ovechkin, who added two assists, beat Ryan Miller with a one-timer from the left circle at 17:54 of the first period for his 50th goal overall and 23rd on the power play, both league highs. It is Ovechkin's first 50-goal campaign since 2009-10, when he scored 50. His single-season high is 65 in the 2007-08 season.

Nicklas Backstrom scored twice and Mikhail Grabovski added another goal for the Capitals, who have 85 points and are still on the outside of the Eastern Conference playoff picture looking in with three games remaining.

Maxim Lapierre had the only goal for St. Louis, which has lost a season-high three straight.

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