Vinnie Hinostroza scored his first career hat trick, and the Arizona Coyotes inched closer to their first Stanley Cup Playoff appearance in seven years with a 6-1 win against the visiting Anaheim Ducks on Thursday night.
The Coyotes moved three points ahead of the Minnesota Wild for the second wild card in the Western Conference with 11 games left for both teams. The Wild lost 4-1 earlier Thursday to the Dallas Stars.
Jason Demers had a goal and an assist, and Oliver Ekman-Larsson tied the franchise record with the 15th short-handed goal of the season for the Coyotes. Alex Goligoski added two assists, and Darcy Kuemper made 37 saves for Arizona, which is 13-4-0 since Feb. 9.
Jakob Silfverberg extended his career-long point streak to seven games with a goal, and Ryan Miller made 18 saves for the Ducks.
With the Ducks on the power play, Coyotes forward Brad Richardson brought the puck into the Anaheim zone against three defenders and passed it to Ekman-Larsson as he came into the play late. Ekman-Larsson took a wrist shot from the top of the left circle that went off Miller’s glove and into the net for a 1-0 lead at 17:25.
The short-handed goal tied the franchise record set by the original Winnipeg Jets in 1988-89.
The Coyotes took a 2-0 lead with 50 seconds left in the opening period after Demers entered the Anaheim zone just as a group of Coyotes won the puck behind the Anaheim net. The puck came out to Demers, and he scored on a slap shot from the slot.
The Ducks scored 58 seconds into the second period to make it 2-1 as Silfverberg was credited with his 21st goal of the season. Devin Shore took a shot that nicked off Silfverberg’s body as he skated in front of Kuemper.
Hinostroza came back with consecutive goals in the second period, scoring at 4:15 and 17:49 for a 4-1 lead, before completing the hat trick with 50 seconds left in the third.
Mario Kempe scored on a 2-on-1 as time expired to make it 6-1.
–Field Level Media