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Recap: Coyotes Start Trip with Loss to Wild

by Dave Vest @davest4yotes / Coyotes Sr. Director of News Content

SAINT PAUL -- Darcy Kuemper stopped 26 of 28 shots in his first start of the season, but the Coyotes lost to Minnesota, 2-1, at the Xcel Energy Center on Tuesday night to start a four-game road trip.

Brendan Perlini notched his first goal of the season in the defeat, which dropped Arizona's record to 1-4-0.

As it has all season, Arizona again out-shot its opponent. Wild goalie Devan Dubnyk made 31 saves.

"We're doing good things," Perlini said. "A lot of good chances out there, sometimes it's just the odd bounce here and there. I know it sounds funny, but as long as you keep at it, we're going to start scoring in big numbers, so I think it will flip around the other way." 

Video: Perlini: Just Need to Bear Down

Perlini scored his goal during a power play at 13:12 of the first period. Jordan Oesterle set up the goal with a drop pass to Perlini along the boards, just outside the right circle. Perlini skated the puck into the corner and then attacked the net without resistance. His shot from in close sailed over Dubnyk's right shoulder and just under the crossbar.

Video: ARI@MIN: Perlini snipes top corner for PPG

Perlini, who entered the game with just three shots on goal, launched a team-high five. 

"He was better tonight," Head Coach Rick Tocchet said. "He was more aggressive. That was a hell of a goal."

• Tuesday's game was a homecoming, of sorts, for Kuemper, whom Minnesota drafted 161st overall in 2009.

"I spent five years here and this was my first time back at all," Kuemper said. "To get the start, I was excited and I was anxious to get going. I was really hoping for a win, we just couldn't get it today ... I think we need to stay focused on that fact that we're generating a lot of chances and playing really good hockey right now. Sometimes that's the hardest part, when you're playing well and not winning."

Video: Kuemper on Returning to MIN

Tied 1-1, Kuemper sprawled to make his best save of the game with his glove to thwart a three-on-one shot attempt by Eric Staal at 7:22 of the second period. 

Video: ARI@MIN: Kuemper robs Staal with terrific glove save

• Staal got his revenge on Kuemper when he scored what turned out to be the game-winning goal through traffic at the top of the crease at 6:18 of the third period.

"I went over to play the shot and (Jason Zucker) made a nice play back against the grain and I couldn't get there," Kuemper said. 

• Trailing 2-1, Dylan Strome was called for cross-checking with just 43 seconds left in the game. The penalty, Strome's first of the season, hampered Arizona's bid to produce the tying goal. 

• Arizona has scored just three goals in its first five games of the season.

"We need somebody to make a play," Tocchet said. "It's the same old song, somebody's got to make a play ... We've got to score some goals. We had some opportunities there, a couple point-blankers, and we didn't put them in. You saw the game. There's some empty nets there. I don't know what else to say."

• Oesterle's assist on Perlini's goal was his first point as a member of the Coyotes. Vinnie Hinostroza, who came to the Coyotes with Oesterle in a trade with Chicago over the summer, also assisted on the goal to notch his first point with Arizona.

Josh Archibald, who missed the first four games because of an upper-body injury, skated 10:38, delivered one hit and won two face-offs in his season debut.

• Strome played a career-high 18:10 and won 14 of 19 face-offs. He leads the NHL in face-off winning percentage at 68.4 percent (52 wins, 24 losses).

Video: Tocchet: Need to Score Some Goals

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