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NHL Game Summary - Colorado at Minnesota

(Friday, November 27th)

Final Score: Minnesota 5, Colorado 3

St. Paul, MN (Sports Network) - Chuck Kobasew recorded his second career hat trick, lifting Minnesota to a 5-3 victory over Colorado in the opener of a home-and-home series between the Northwest Division foes.

Andrew Brunette had an assist and scored the game-winner midway through the third for the Wild, who received 31 saves from Niklas Backstrom to finish a four-game homestand 2-1-1.

"We want to try to get better every night," Backstrom said. "There's a lot of things we have to work on, but we're improving, we're getting there."

Chris Stewart, Kyle Quincey and Paul Stastny each lit the lamp for the Avalanche, who have lost four of five overall. Craig Anderson was beaten four times on 31 shots to take the loss.

With the game tied, 3-3, and Colorado's Darcy Tucker in the penalty box for hooking, Brunette's shot from the right goal line at the 11:02 mark put Minnesota in front.

Colorado controlled the tempo the rest of the way but couldn't solve Backstrom, who made eight saves in the final frame. Kobasew's empty-netter with 18 seconds remaining sealed his hat trick and the outcome.

"We were right there the whole time. I think we played a really solid game for the most part," Anderson said. "It was just one of those nights where their [power play] got one more than our's did."

Quincey's goal 5:58 into the game was countered 3 1/2 minutes later by Owen Nolan, who went uncovered in front and snapped a shot that got past Anderson.

Three goals were scored in the first six minutes of the second stanza. Kobasew scored a pair from in front around Stastny's power-play goal 4:41 in.

Kobasew's second tally came on the man advantage and gave Minnesota the lead, but a late turnover at the blue line resulted in a 2-on-1 break for Colorado, and Stewart tied the game with 2:24 remaining in the middle frame.

Game Notes

The two teams will also face off on Saturday in Colorado...Colorado defenseman Adam Foote missed his fifth straight game today with a jaw injury...Minnesota played its third straight game without winger Martin Havlat, who is battling a hamstring injury and was placed on injured reserve Friday...Minnesota converted on 2-of-4 power-play tries...Colorado went 1-for-4 on the man advantage.

11/27 20:25:08 ET

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