Photo Credit: Norm Hall
COYOTES STARTING LINE-UP
(LW) Fredrik Sjostrom - (C) Dave Scatchard - (RW) Shane Doan
(D) Travis Roche - (D) Ed Jovanovski
DALLAS STARTING LINE-UP
(LW) Niklas Hagman - (C) Patrik Stefan - (RW) Jeff Halpern
(D) Darryl Sydor - (D) Stephane Robidas
Phoenix - Mikael Tellqvist
Dallas - Marty Turco
On Saturday night, the Phoenix Coyotes dropped a 4-3 overtime decision at the hands of their Pacific Division rivals, the Dallas Stars.
Off the opening face-off, the Coyotes made things difficult for the Stars as they worked the puck into the offensive zone where they wasted no time in getting a pair of shots on net.
Throughout the first five minutes of play, Phoenix completely dominated the tempo of play, out-shooting the Stars by a margin of 4-2. However, the early offensive pressure would be absorbed by the Stars defense and netminder Marty Turco, who kept the Coyotes from taking first lead of the night.
At 6:52 of the period, Phoenix made their first trip to the penalty box when defenseman Derek Morris was called for hooking. The Coyotes would successfully kill of the first 1:40 of the Morris penalty before a tripping call on blueliner Keith Ballard gave the Stars a five-on-three power play for 20-seconds. As it turned out, Dallas would need just 16-seconds of the two-man advantage to register the first goal of the game as Jere Lehtinen finished off a tic-tac-toe play with a wrist shot from the right side of the net that beat goaltender Mikael Tellqvist.
Since, Lehtinen's goal came with four seconds remaining on the penalty to Morris, the Stars still had 1:44 of power play time to work with on the infraction to Keith Ballard. Despite the extended man-advantage, the Stars would be unable to add to their lead as Tellqvist stood his ground and kept control of his rebounds.
The Coyotes would find themselves shorthanded again at 12:11 of the first when Shane Doan was sent to the box for interference. Less than a minute into the penalty to Doan, the Stars made it a 2-0 game when Jussi Jokinen lifted a shot from the left side of the goal over Tellqvist as he tried to slide across the crease.
Phoenix would immediately shake off the Jokinen goal and respond with their first tally of the game just 25-seconds later when Mike Comrie made a good play to control the puck and carry it behind the Stars net before sending a pass to Ed Jovanovski at the point; who then blasted a slap shot that darted through the legs of Turco to cut the Dallas lead to 2-1 at 13:33 of the first.
Dallas would get two more power plays over the final six minutes of the period, but the Coyotes penalty killing unit was able to limit the pressure on Tellqvist and those shots that he did face were turned aside as the first period came to a close with the Stars holding a one-goal lead.
The Stars would regain the two-goal lead 42-seconds into the seconds period when Niklas Hagman wrapped the puck around the Phoenix goal and slit a backhand past Tellqvist for a 3-1 lead.
The Coyotes continued to pressure the Stars and had a good scoring opportunity minutes later when Patrick Fischer and Ladislav Nagy had a two-on-one rush. However, when Fischer released his wrist shot from the slot, hit stick snapped causing the shot to slowly roll to the net where it was covered stopped by Turco.
At 5:47 of the second, the Coyotes offensive pressure would pay off when Owen Nolan dumped the puck off to Jeremy Roenick in the corner, who then allowed Nolan to move back into the slot before sending the puck back to Nolan; who then snapped a shot past Turco on the strong side to make it a 3-2 game.
Phoenix would get their first power play of the game at 9:45 of the second when Dallas' Jeff Halpern was called for holding-the-stick in the offensive zone. The extra attacker gave the Coyotes a chance to bring the play back into the Stars zone and get a pair of shots, on goal, but limited traffic in front of Turco allowed the Dallas netminder to make the saves and preserve the Stars one-goal lead.
Dallas made their second visit to the box at 14:08 of the stanza when the club received a bench minor for too-many men on the ice. Matthew Barnaby served the minor penalty for the Stars. The Coyotes did a good job of getting pressure on the Dallas net early in the period, but over the final 60-seconds, the Stars were able to clear the zone and return to full strength.
Tellqvist continued his strong play in the final minutes of the period as he blanked the Stars forwards on a multitude of shots, allowing the Coyotes to head into the locker room only trailing by one goal after 40-minutes of play.
During the first minute of play in the third period, the Coyotes nearly tied the game, but a highlight save by Turco on Yanic Perreault kept Phoenix searching for the tying goal.
The Stars would give the Coyotes a power play at 4:44 of the third when Dallas was assessed their second bench minor for too-many men on the ice of the game. The Coyotes quickly set-up shop in the Dallas zone, moving the puck around in search of open shooting lanes. Then at 6:13 of the period, a boarding penalty on Dallas' Jon Klemm gave Phoenix 31 seconds of five-on-three hockey.
The Coyotes would fail to convert on the two man-advantage but they wouldn't let the Stars return to full strength unscathed as Mike Zigomanis grabbed a rebound from a shot by Ladislav Nagy and roofed a shot over a fallen Turco to tie the game at 3-3 at 7:46 of the third.
Phoenix and Dallas would trade offensive rushes over the course of the final minutes of regulation, but neither team would find the back of the net, sending the game into overtime.
In the extra frame, the Coyotes were caught trying to hold off a relentless Stars attack as that continued to add to their shot totals.
The Phoenix defense made repeated clearings from their own zone, but Dallas was quick to chase down loose pucks and head back into the Coyotes zone.
Dallas' pressure would end cease at 4:55 of the extra frame as a shot by Jere Lehtinen was stopped by the leg of Tellqvist before ricocheting off his shoulder, over his back and falling into the Coyotes net. The on-ice officials went upstairs for a review, but quickly concluded that the goal was not hit with a high stick as the Coyotes five-game home winning streak came to an end with a 4-3 overtime defeat at the hands of the Stars.