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Lightning edge Coyotes

Jan 22, 2012 - 6:12 AM
Glendale, AZ (Sports Network) - Steve Downie scored the eventual game-winning goal in the second period and added an assist, leading the Tampa Bay Lightning to a 4-3 win over the Phoenix Coyotes.

Martin St. Louis had a goal and an assist, while Steven Stamkos and Teddy Purcell also scored. Dwayne Roloson stopped 33-of-36 shots for the Lightning, who have won three consecutive games since dropping seven straight.

"He played a great game tonight," Stamkos said of Roloson's performance. "He made a lot of huge saves early that allowed us to get the lead."

Lauri Korpikoski and Ray Whitney had a goal and an assist, and Keith Yandle also scored for the Coyotes, who have lost three straight and six of their last seven. Mike Smith was tagged for all four goals on 21 shots in defeat.

Tampa Bay's game winner came at 16:39 of the second stanza after Downie intercepted a pass in the neutral zone and gained the offensive blue line on the right wing. Downie glided to the right circle and let a slap shot go that beat Smith over the left shoulder to put the Bolts up 4-1.

The Coyotes pulled to within 4-2 at 3:35 of the third period when Yandle corralled a puck off the left wing boards and wired a slap shot in behind Roloson.

Phoenix struck again at 16:01 of the final period with the man advantage when Whitney got a feed from Oliver Ekman-Larsson in the right circle and blasted it through traffic and into the net to make it a one-goal game.

Phoenix pulled Smith with a minute to go in regulation, then Stamkos was whistled for cross-checking with 33 seconds left, giving the Coyotes a 6-on-4 advantage, but they were unable to score the tying goal.

"We had a number of scoring chances that we didn't capitalize on," Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett said. " It was magnified by the fact that they were getting very few chances, and capitalizing on them."

Tampa Bay struck first at 12:02 of the first period after Dominic Moore chased down a loose puck in the left corner and found St. Louis, who fired a quick shot on net that was kicked out by Smith, but Stamkos slammed home the rebound.

The Bolts extended their lead to 2-0 at 15:39 of the first stanza when Pavel Kubina threw a weak shot from the right point that was kicked out, but Purcell jumped on the rebound and batted it past an out-of-position Smith.

Tampa Bay again extended its lead to 3-0 at 6;15 of the second period when Trevor Smith poked the puck out to the neutral zone and was off to the races on a 2-on-1 with St. Louis. Smith dished to St. Louis on the right wing and the speedy forward dipped his shoulder and drove to the net before putting a tricky backhander on net that got past Smith.

Phoenix finally got on the board while shorthanded at 8:29 of the second period thanks to a sparkling individual effort by Korpikoski. Pinned deep in their own zone, the puck popped free to Boyd Gordon, who quickly got the puck to Korpikoski and he raced up the left wing, split two Tampa defenders and fired high to the far side on Roloson to make it 3-1.

Game Notes

Coyotes' forward Kyle Chipchura had his three-game point streak snapped...Stamkos has 13 goals in his last 14 games and extended his league- leading total to 32, five ahead of Blackhawks' center Jonathan Toews...Tampa Bay failed to score on two power play chances, while Phoenix went 1-for-4 with the extra man...Tampa Bay will begin a five-game homestand on Tuesday against the Columbus Blue Jackets, while the Coyotes will continue their current six- game homestand against the Ottawa Senators, also on Tuesday.