NHL Game Summary - Ottawa at Phoenix
(Tuesday, January 24th)
Final Score: Phoenix 3, Ottawa 2
Glendale, AZ (Sports Network) - Radim Vrbata scored the deciding goal early in the third period, as Phoenix slipped by Ottawa, 3-2.
Gilbert Brule and Shane Doan also lit the lamp to back a 32-save performance by Mike Smith for the Coyotes, who snapped a three-game slide heading into the All-Star break.
"This was a huge two points for our team," said Smith. "We've been playing good hockey lately but just weren't able to get that win, so we needed to have this game. We feel pretty good right now."
Daniel Alfredsson and Chris Neil taliied for the Senators, who enter the week- long respite after dropping their last three outings.
Craig Anderson stopped 23 shots in the setback.
"We're not doing enough lately," said Ottawa head coach Paul MacLean. "We have to play harder and smarter and try to have the puck a bit more."
Vrbata put the hosts ahead by a 3-1 count at the 90-second mark of the third period, poking in a loose puck at the left post off a Ray Whitney chance.
Though Neil responded 14 seconds later from an odd-man rush, Smith shut the door from there. He made 11 stops in all over the final 20 minutes to preserve the winning margin.
Brule gave the hosts a 1-0 edge with 1:07 left in the opening period, taking a puck that Mikkel Boedker lost control of and swiping it home from near the goal line to the left of Anderson.
Doan upped the edge to 2-0 as the clock ticked below four minutes remaining in the second period, potting a Lauri Korpikoski rebound from atop the crease.
Alfredsson struck with 2:21 to play in the second, finishing off a passing play between Chris Phillips and Nick Foligno for his 17th of the season.
Phoenix won just its fourth home game in 10 tries against Ottawa since relocating from Winnipeg in 1996...Senators defenseman Filip Kuba finished a game-worst minus-3 in 23:13 of ice time...Both teams resume their schedule next Tuesday, as the Coyoes host Anaheim and the Senators travel to Boston to finish a six-game trans-continental road trip.
01/25 01:22:20 ET