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game recap

Hill, Hall help Coyotes handle Panthers for fourth victory in row

Goalie makes 37 saves in first start of season, forward scores first game-winner with Arizona

by Alain Poupart / NHL.com Independent Correspondent

Hall's power-play goal

ARI@FLA: Hall blisters home PPG to put Coyotes ahead

Taylor Hall skates inside the circle and hammers the puck into the back of the net for a power-play goal, giving the Coyotes a 3-2 lead

  • 00:40 •

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Adin Hill made 37 saves in his first start of the season when the Arizona Coyotes defeated the Florida Panthers 5-2 at BB&T Center on Tuesday.

Hill started with Antti Raanta and Darcy Kuemper each out with a lower-body injury. The 23-year-old had played two games in relief this season.

"A little bit nervous, but once you get to the rink and you get into your routine before the game, all that kind of disappears and you're just playing the game you love," Hill said. "I felt good. I guess I saw a lot of pucks. The guys did a great job locking it down for me for the first game. For my first start of the year, they played a great game, and special teams seemed to be the key to the win."

 

[WATCH: All Coyotes vs. Panthers highlights]

 

Taylor Hall had a goal and an assist for the Coyotes (25-16-4), who matched their season-best winning streak with their fourth in a row.

"These last four games, you're seeing every line is kind of playing the way that they want to play and a lot of guys are chipping in," Hall said. "That's great for the team's confidence."

Chris Driedger made 32 saves in his second consecutive start ahead of Sergei Bobrovsky for the Panthers (22-16-5), who have alternated wins and regulation losses in their past six games.

"We need to just kind of dig deep here," Florida forward Noel Acciari said. "We can't be going back and forth. We need to string together three, four wins in a row and kind of separate ourselves a little bit from the bottom of our (Atlantic) Division so we can have a little bit of a cushion. But right now it's not going right for us, but I have faith in this locker room and we all know what we need to do."

Christian Dvorak gave Arizona a 1-0 lead at 10:20 of the second period when he tipped in Hall's wrist shot from the right circle. The goal was confirmed after it was reviewed for a high stick.

Video: ARI@FLA: Dvorak redirects Hall's shot on power play

Acciari tied it 1-1 at 11:21, and Mike Hoffman gave Florida a 2-1 lead 36 seconds later on a 2-on-1. Acciari's goal was his 10th in his past 11 games; he has 15 this season.

"Just being in the right spot," he said. "Just go to the front of the net and good things will happen. But I've got to give a lot of credit to my linemates (Brett Connolly and Vincent Trocheck). Those guys are great with the puck and they open up a lot of space for me to just sit in front of the net."

Video: ARI@FLA: Hoffman rips puck in off iron on the rush

Oliver Ekman-Larsson tied it 2-2 at 13:33 with a slap shot from the left circle, and Hall gave Arizona a 3-2 lead at 15:39 with the Coyotes on a 4-on-3 power play. It was Hall's third goal in 10 games, and his first game-winner, with Arizona since he was acquired in a trade with the New Jersey Devils on Dec. 16.

"I told [Taylor] the other day, if he gets two shots on that side on the power play, I'll take it for the rest of the year right now," Coyotes coach Rick Tocchet said. "Just let him shoot with separation. The second (power-play goal), that was a seeing-eye shot. That was a [heck] of a shot."

Video: ARI@FLA: Ekman-Larsson beats Driedger to tie the game

Carl Soderberg made it 4-2 when he scored on a breakaway with 2:02 left in the third period. Lawson Crouse made it 5-2 with an empty-net goal with 48 seconds remaining.

Video: ARI@FLA: Soderberg pots pretty backhand goal on rush

Arizona was 2-for-2 on the power play; Florida was 0-for-2.

"It was just like a workman kind of game," Tocchet said. "Special teams [were] something that we were really happy with that we won that battle. Florida is a really good team. They pressed a couple of times. We defended really well at the end. There were a lot of guys who contributed tonight."

 

They said it

"I liked our response. We were pretty calm on the bench. That's just the sort of stuff that you're looking for. You're going to play in these situations where things might not go your way, you've just got to keep your head." -- Coyotes coach Rick Tocchet

"A disappointing game. Even though we're in decent shape with the lead, I thought we missed that first-period start where we didn't dictate the tempo or pace of the game. We're up 2-1 and we give up two quick ones and that changed the whole complexion of the game. In the third we didn't generate much. We had some decent looks, but you can't be happy with that." -- Panthers coach Joel Quenneville

 

Need to know

Ivan Prosvetov was Hill's backup. The 20-year-old has yet to play an NHL game. ... Hill played 13 games (11 starts) last season. ... Arizona had a four-game winning streak from Oct. 15-22. ... The Coyotes have killed 14 consecutive penalties in their past five games. ... Arizona is 14-6-3 on the road. ... Panthers center Aleksander Barkov did not have a point for a fifth consecutive game. ... Ekman-Larsson tied his season high with three points. ... Arizona forward Phil Kessel had a season-high three points, all assists.

 

What's next

Coyotes: At the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; SUN, FS-A, FS-A PLUS, NHL.TV)

Panthers: Host the Vancouver Canucks on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; FS-F, SNP, NHL.TV)

Video: Ekman-Larsson, Hill power Coyotes past Panthers

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