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NHL Game Summary - Anaheim at Phoenix



(Thursday, March 22nd)

Final Score: Phoenix 2, Anaheim 1

Glendale, AZ (Sports Network) - Curtis Joseph made 22 saves, leading the Phoenix Coyotes over the Anaheim Ducks, 2-1.

Jeff Taffe and Bill Thomas each scored for Phoenix, which snapped a four-game slide and won for just the second time in its last 11 games and fifth in its last 20.

"We knew the game was going to be a process and we kept the energy up and played like a quicker team," said Phoenix head coach Wayne Gretzky. "Obviously the young guys are playing well, but the experienced guys are playing really well right now. We kicked up the energy to end the year with a solid effort. Anaheim is a great hockey team but they probably did not have their best game tonight."

Travis Moen had the lone tally and Ilya Bryzgalov finished with 19 saves for the Ducks, who have dropped two straight while trying to achieve franchise records for wins (44) and points (100). They established both marks last season when they went 43-27-12 for 98 points.

Anaheim is also battling Nashville and Detroit for the top spot in the Western Conference, but fell three points behind the Predators (101), who earned a point in an overtime loss to Calgary on Thursday. The Red Wings are one point behind Nashville after falling to Columbus in a shootout.

Taffe opened the scoring at 4:43 in the second, when he took a centering pass from Shane Doane and tipped the one-timer past Bryzgalov to make it 1-0.

Phoenix then made it 2-0 when Steven Reinprecht drew Bryzgalov to the far right side of the net. He then sent a pass to the top of the crease, where Thomas tipped the puck past the outstretched leg of the netminder for a 2-0 Phoenix lead at 15:56.

Moen brought Anaheim to within 2-1 when he beat Joseph on a backhand shot with 2:33 remaining in the contest. That was as close as the Ducks would get, however, as Joseph made a couple of key saves down the stretch, including a point-blank shot by Cory Perry at the midway point of the period.

"It's hard to explain that one," said Ducks defenseman Scott Niedermayer, of the team's performance. "They played a good defensive game, they weren't taking many chances, and we just didn't have the jump to be able to get chances through that, especially early on."

Game Notes

Anaheim leads the season series, 6-2...Phoenix snapped a 10-game slide at Anaheim...Anaheim defenseman Chris Pronger missed his seventh straight game with a broken toe...Anaheim went 0-for-4 on the power play, while Phoenix went 0-for-5.

03/23 01:25:34 ET


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