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RECAP: Coyotes 5, Oilers 1

by Chris Wescott / Edmonton Oilers

EDMONTON, AB – A quick start and strong finish helped the Coyotes cap their season series sweep of the Oilers with a 5-1 victory at Rexall Place.

“We obviously took a step back tonight. It wasn’t the game that we wanted,” Oilers interim coach Todd Nelson said. “I thought that our execution was really poor.”

The Coyotes, despite playing the night before, got the early jump on the Oilers. Just 1:44 into the game, former Oilers forward Sam Gagner’s shot trickled through goaltender Ben Scrivens for the 1-0 lead. Martin Erat recorded the assist.

Erat scored at the five minute mark of the first period to put the Coyotes up 2-0. Erat tipped a Connor Murphy shot and Tobias Rieder earned the second assist. Viktor Fasth replaced Scrivens in net after that score.

“You have to just be part of a machine to be a good team in this league,” Oilers Captain Andrew Ference said. “Right now, there’s just a piece missing here, a piece missing there and it throws the whole thing off. It’s just nowhere near it has to be in this league.”

The Oilers got on the board at 6:18, courtesy of a shot by Justin Schultz. The puck was tipped in past goaltender Devan Dubnyk by Coyotes forward B.J. Crombeen. Brad Hunt and Mark Arcobello tallied assists on the goal.

The Oilers ended the first period outshooting the Coyotes 13-8.

Coyotes defenceman Keith Yandle gave his team the 3-1 lead at 7:54 of the second period with a one-timer off a Shane Doan pass. Antoine Vermette had the second assist.

The series of unfortunate events for the Oilers continued in the third period. Brandon Gormley’s point shot went off Oscar Klefbom and in at 4:07 of the final frame. Gagner got the assist.

Gagner made it 5-1 Coyotes just 13 seconds later with his second goal of the night. Gormley earned the assist.

“It’s not the best night I’ve had here but it’s definitely a good feeling,” Gagner said. “It’s just one of those nights where things seemed to go in for me. I haven’t had a lot of that this year so I’ll take it when I can get it.”

Dubnyk finished the game with 26 saves against his former team. The Coyotes have won all five meetings between these two teams this season.

“It’s disappointing and I understand the fans are frustrated,” Nelson said. “All I can say is that it’s a really good time for a break to get away from the game for a while.”

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