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NHL Game Summary - Chicago at Phoenix



(Saturday, March 20th)

Final Score: Phoenix 5, Chicago 4 (SO)

Glendale, AZ (Sports Network) - Radim Vrbata scored the lone goal of the shootout, as the Phoenix Coyotes rallied for a 5-4 win over the Chicago Blackhawks.

The win gives Phoenix 95 points on the season, and it is now just one point back of San Jose for first place in the Pacific Division.

In the third round of the shootout, Vrbata lifted a backhand into the top of the net, and Ilya Bryzgalov sealed the win when he stopped Patrick Sharp's stuff attempt.

Lee Stempniak had two goals, while Adrian Aucoin and Wojtek Wolski each had a goal and an assist for the Coyotes, who have won eight straight for the first time in over 10 years. Ilya Bryzgalov made 34 saves in the win.

"I thought it was a very entertaining hockey game," Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett said. "We found a little bit of a second wind in the third period."

Patirck Kane had a goal and an assist, while Sharp, Andrew Ladd and Troy Brouwer each lit the lamp for the Blackhawks, who have dropped four of their last five. Antti Niemi made 31 stops in the loss.

Despite the loss, Chicago moved into sole possession of the top spot in the Western Conference with 97 points, one better than San Jose.

Trailing by a goal to start the third, the Coyotes tied the game 1:11 into the period. On the power play, a left circle faceoff win saw the puck eventually come back to Aucoin, who threw a shot on net from the high slot that Stempniak tipped in.

Chicago, though, scored just 1:22 later, as Ladd threw a simple shot on net from the top of the left circle that fooled Bryzgalov.

Just over a minute later, the Hawks made it a 4-2 game when Marian Hossa's pass from the left circle to the slot was one-timed by Sharp into the net.

Phoenix, though, had another answer to tie the game, as goals from Stempniak and Aucoin again knotted the contest.

Stempniak made it a 4-3 game when Wolski sent a pass from behind the left side of the net to the low slot, where Stempniak one-timed it home at the 6:53 mark.

Aucoin then tied the contest with 5:07 left to play in the third on a wrist shot from the slot that went in after the initial shot was stopped.

Overtime saw a penalty shot attempt for Phoenix, as Matthew Lombardi was hauled down by Duncan Keith on a breakaway at the 1:15 mark. Lombardi's attempt, though, was unsuccessful after his backhand attempt was stopped by Niemi's right pad.

Vernon Fiddler almost won the game with 17.1 seconds showing on the overtime clock when he got the puck into the net, but it was waived off by the referee on ice since Fiddler used a distinct kicking motion to redirect the disc. A replay upheld the call.

"They've won eight in a row. They deserved to win tonight," Keith said. "They played a great team game."

Chicago got the only goal of the first period, as Brouwer's one-timer from the slot beat Bryzgalov went 8:08 to play in the stanza.

In the second, Chicago took a 2-0 lead when Hossa sent a hard pass from the left boards over to the right circle where Kane's one-timer found the back of the net for a power-play goal at the 5:11 mark.

Phoenix, though, made it a one-goal game a bit over four minutes later, as Wolski banged home the puck during a scrum in front.

Game Notes

Stempniak has nine goals in his eight games with Phoenix since the team acquired him from Toronto...Chicago hosts Phoenix on Tuesday while the Coyotes will play in Dallas on Sunday before heading to Chicago...Phoenix has been unsuccessful on both of its penalty shots this season...Phoenix's last eight- game winning streak was November 16-December 2, 1999...The Coyotes have taken all three games with Chicago this season.

03/21 01:45:52 ET

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