Coyotes
Stars
2 - 1 Final
  for this game

Mueller, Doan score as Coyotes edge Stars

Mar 6, 2008 - 6:08 AM
By John Tranchina PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

DALLAS (Ticker) -- Something about the Dallas Stars brings out the best in the Phoenix Coyotes.

Rookie Peter Mueller and captain Shane Doan scored goals as the Coyotes on Wednesday posted their fourth win in six meetings with the Pacific Division-leading Stars this season, a 2-1 triumph.

The Stars (41-24-5), who are 13-4-0 in their last 17 games despite losing two in a row, trail the Detroit Red Wings (44-18-6) by seven points in the race for the Presidents' Trophy. Dallas has scored just two goals in its last two games after piling up 21 in their previous four - all triumphs.

"We've just got to pay the price to win. Right now, we're not doing it," Stars coach Dave Tippett said. "We have to find that working identity. Not every goal is going to be a pretty goal."

The Coyotes (34-28-5), who have not reached the postseason since 2002, already have surpassed their victory and points totals from last season with 15 games remaining. With the win, Phoenix climbed within three points of the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

"It's a tough haul ahead of us, but we're really proud of what we've got going here," Coyotes coach Wayne Gretzky said. "The light at the end of the tunnel is really strong. We're really proud of our kids, but we've got our work cut out. This has been a great experience for our kids. They work hard every night."

Phoenix, which had scored just three goals in its previous three games, continued to struggle offensively. But Ilya Bryzgalov made 20 saves in this one to make the team's two tallies enough.

"If we're going to make the playoffs, our goaltending has to be strong," Doan said. "Bryzgalov has given us a chance. Our goaltending has been strong all year. That's why we're in this position."

"First of all, you've got to have good goaltending, and we're getting good goaltending," Gretzky added. "Tonight, to shut them down to 21 shots, I thought defensively, our team had a solid, solid game. Our penalty-killing was outstanding, our team responsibility to defense was strong. It was just a nice win for us."

The Coyotes opened the scoring at 9:26 of the first period, as Mueller became the first rookie this season to reach the 20-goal mark. The 19-year-old he took a quick pass from behind the net by Joel Perrault and beat goaltender Marty Turco to the glove side from the bottom of the left faceoff circle for a 1-0 lead.

"It's definitely been surreal," Mueller said of reaching the 20-goal plateau. "It's like playing (the video game) 'NHL '08.' I have to give a lot of credit to my teammates. They've really encouraged me and helped me out."

Doan's 21st goal of the season just 59 seconds into the second period doubled the advantage. The veteran received a backhand pass by Radim Vrbata from the right side of the net and beat a sliding Turco from the slot for his fourth goal - and 10th point - in five games against Dallas this season.

The Stars halved the deficit with 2:22 left in the middle period on Brad Winchester's first goal of the season.

During a 2-on-1 rush, Toby Petersen - who was recalled from the minors on Tuesday - fired a wrist shot from the left circle that Bryzgalov stopped. But a charging Winchester deftly steered the rebound over the netminder's pad for his fifth career tally.

"Toby made a quick shot and I was just going to the net," Winchester said of his first goal since December 2006. "I just tried to reach back and was able to get it enough to get it over (Bryzgalov). It feels good. I want to contribute and certainly develop a good four lines. It's important for the overall success for our club."

The Stars pressed throughout the third but were unable to get the equalizer past Bryzgalov, who turned aside five shots in the period, including consecutive slappers by Mike Modano and Steve Ott 4 1/2 minutes into the session.

"I was just lucky," Bryzgalov said of his save on Ott. "I was able to stretch my leg and he put the puck right in my glove."

"We were getting some opportunities from out far," Dallas captain Brenden Morrow said. "They battled hard, had a better effort in front of their net. Bryzgalov made the first save and we didn't really pay the price to get to the rebounds."

Turco finished with 14 saves.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHOENIX 1 1 0 2
    DALLAS 0 1 0 1 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: PHO - PETER MUELLER 20 (JOEL PERRAULT, ZBYNEK MICHALEK) 9:26
    2ND PRD: PHO - SHANE DOAN 21 (RADIM VRBATA, ED JOVANOVSKI) 0:59
    DAL - BRAD WINCHESTER 1 (TOBY PETERSEN, STU BARNES) 17:38
    3RD PRD: NONE
    POWER-PLAY CONVERSIO

    Mar 5 11:05 PM
  • 27
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 17 roots (Close Finish)

    Coyotes 2, Stars 1  3rd - 0:55Mar 5 10:55 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHOENIX 1 1 2
    DALLAS 0 1 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: PHO - PETER MUELLER 20 (JOEL PERRAULT, ZBYNEK MICHALEK) 9:26
    2ND PRD: PHO - SHANE DOAN 21 (RADIM VRBATA, ED JOVANOVSKI) 0:59
    DAL - BRAD WINCHESTER 1 (TOBY PETERSEN, MATTIAS NORSTROM)
    17:38
    SHOTS ON GOAL:

    Mar 5 10:08 PM


  • NHL
    PHOENIX 2
    DALLAS 1
    2ND PRD: DAL - BRAD WINCHESTER 1 (TOBY PETERSEN, MATTIAS NORSTROM)
    17:38

    Coyotes 2, Stars 1  2nd - 2:22Mar 5 10:07 PM


  • NHL
    PHOENIX 2
    DALLAS 0
    2ND PRD: PHO - SHANE DOAN 21 (RADIM VRBATA, ED JOVANOVSKI) 0:59

    Coyotes 2, Stars 0  2nd - 19:01Mar 5 9:37 PM
  • 10
    roots
    lpickrell Added 5 roots

    Coyotes 1, Stars 0  End of 1stMar 5 9:20 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHOENIX 1 1
    DALLAS 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: PHO - PETER MUELLER 20 (JOEL PERRAULT, ZBYNEK MICHALEK) 9:26
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    PHO 6 6
    DAL 9 9
    GOALIES: PHO - ILJA BRYZGAL

    Mar 5 9:12 PM


  • NHL
    PHOENIX 1
    DALLAS 0
    1ST PRD: PHO - PETER MUELLER 20 (JOEL PERRAULT, ZBYNEK MICHALEK) 9:26

    Coyotes 1, Stars 0  1st - 10:34Mar 5 8:55 PM
  • 5
    roots
    Sensfan4eva Added 5 roots

    Coyotes vs. StarsMar 1 11:59 PM