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game recap

Coyotes score seven, hand Lightning second loss in row

Gain in wild-card race; Garland, Keller each has three points for Arizona

by Alan Robinson / Independent Correspondent

Keller's quick wrister

TBL@ARI: Keller pots wrister from top of the circle

Clayton Keller receives a pass, skates toward the top of the circle and fires a wrist shot past Andrei Vasilevskiy for a 2-1 lead in the 1st

  • 00:41 •

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Conor Garland and Clayton Keller each had two goals and an assist in the Arizona Coyotes' 7-3 win against the Tampa Bay Lightning at Gila River Arena on Saturday.

Antti Raanta made 27 saves for the Coyotes (31-26-8), who had lost two games in a row. They lead the Winnipeg Jets by one point for the first wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Western Conference. 

Arizona, outshot 46-14 in a 1-0 loss to the St. Louis Blues on Thursday, scored the final four goals of the game. 


[WATCH: All Lightning vs. Coyotes highlights]


"I think we knew how big this game was," Garland said. "Obviously we weren't thrilled with our game in St. Louis when we let [Raanta] hang out to dry, and we kind of rallied as a group. … I think a lot of guys were feeling it tonight."

Video: TBL@ARI: Garland wires far-side shot past Vasilevskiy

The Lightning (40-17-5), who lost 5-3 to the Vegas Golden Knights on Thursday, have lost two straight following an 11-game winning streak. They are second in the Atlantic Division, five points behind the Boston Bruins for first.

"It's extremely disappointing," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "We're a much better team than that. We have a system, it's worked well the last three months, and we've got to be better at it."

Andrei Vasilevskiy made 34 saves but allowed a season-high seven goals, or as many as he gave up against the Coyotes in his previous six games against them.

"Maybe we were too accepting of the (Vegas) loss," Tampa Bay forward Pat Maroon said. "Maybe this was just bound to happen. But we can't get too down on ourselves. It's a game where you burn the tape and move on."

Brad Richardson gave the Coyotes a 4-3 lead at 11:04 of the second period after Taylor Hall forced a turnover by Tampa Bay defenseman Braydon Coburn along the end boards and passed to Richardson in the slot. Tampa Bay had scored two straight goals to tie it 3-3.

"They get it to 3-3 and everybody gets down, but the response was big, and everybody got his juice back again," Coyotes coach Rick Tocchet said.

Keller's second goal and third in 21 games made it 5-3 at 11:51 of the third period, and Garland's second goal made it 6-3 at 14:28 on the power play. Derek Stepan scored at 18:46 for the 7-3 final.

"You try to find every weakness (in a goalie)," Keller said. "Every game there's clips of their goalie and the recent goals that he's given up, so I'm definitely going to be watching."

Anthony Cirelli gave Tampa Bay a 1-0 lead at 3:53 of the first period. Garland tied it 1-1 at 17:36, and Keller scored 1:10 later for 2-1 Arizona lead at 18:46. 

Carl Soderberg's power-play goal extended the lead to 3-1 at 5:51 of the second. Ondrej Palat cut it to 3-2 at 8:45, and Brayden Point tied it 3-3 at 10:11.

"We kept pressing in the third period and we didn't back up, and that's the way you win in this League," Tocchet said. "When Tampa comes into town, you're on guard because you don't want to be embarrassed, and I felt we stuck with the game plan. When we stick to the game plan, we can be a good team."

Video: TBL@ARI: Garland jams puck home from crease for PPG


They said it

"Obviously we were on a little bit of a run there the previous couple of months. But goals are going to go in and, lately, they've been going in. We've got to reset here and refocus and watch some video, and see where we can be better." -- Lightning forward Anthony Cirelli

"We defended hard and played our style of hockey, and when we do that, we're a tough team to beat. We want to carry this into Tuesday. We've got to be ready to play every single night and keep pushing." -- Coyotes forward Clayton Keller

 Video: TBL@ARI: Keller nets wrister for second goal of game


Need to know

Lightning defenseman Erik Cernak left with an undisclosed injury midway through the second period. … Vasilevskiy has lost two straight games after going 19-0-2 in his previous 21. … Tampa Bay has allowed 18 goals in its past four games after giving up eight goals in its previous seven. … The Coyotes hadn't scored seven goals since a 7-1 win against the Lightning on Oct. 27, 2018. … Garland has scored 15 of his Arizona-leading 22 goals at home.


What's next

Lightning: Host the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET; ESPN+, TVAS, SUN, SNO, NHL.TV)

Coyotes: Host the Florida Panthers on Tuesday (9 p.m. ET; SNE, SNP, SNO (JIP), FS-A, FS-A PLUS, FS-F, NHL.TV)

Video: Garland's three points lead Coyotes past Lightning

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