St. Louis at Phoenix

Blues 3, Coyotes 2

CBSSports.com wire reports
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GLENDALE, Ariz. -- After a listless first period, the St. Louis Blues found their intensity and their scoring touch.

Alexander Steen scored his team-leading 12th goal and Brian Elliott made 24 saves to help the streaking Blues beat the Phoenix Coyotes 3-2 Friday.

With both teams waiting on the benches, the start of the game was delayed 30 minutes as former Coyotes captain Keith Tkachuk was inducted into the team's Ring of Honor. The result was a largely tentative first period with few scoring chances and little physical play.

All that changed in the final two periods.

"We're creatures of habit," Elliott said. "It's hard. They got a couple of chances early and you want to make those saves to get your head in the game."

Matt D'Agostini and Jason Arnott also scored for the Blues, who have won six of eight. St. Louis has points in 18 of its last 21 games (14-3-4) since Ken Hitchcock took over as coach after David Payne was fired Nov. 8.

"We really gutted it out," Hitchcock said. "Both teams, especially in the second and third periods, really went right at each other. It was more of a feeling-out process."

Shane Doan and Keith Yandle scored for the Coyotes, who had won two in a row. Phoenix fell to 7-8-2 at home.

"We've been banging our head against the wall trying to figure out why," coach Dave Tippett said. "If you would have told me that by Christmas we'd be a game under .500, I would have been very surprised. That's something that's going to have to change."

After a scoreless first period, Steen gave the Blues a 1-0 lead at 7:12 of the second when he took a long outlet pass from Alex Pietrangelo and beat Jason LaBarbera from the bottom of the left circle.

Doan tied the game 44 seconds later on a long rebound to the inside hash of the left circle, but D'Agostini put the Blues in front to stay with a slap shot from the right circle at 18:25 of the period.

"They had tired people on the ice and we caught them there," Hitchcock said. "But they did the same thing to us."

Arnott made it 3-1 at 1:48 of the third, seconds after Phoenix's Martin Hanzal left the ice after being struck in the face on an inadvertent high stick by David Backes.

"We knew what we were going to get from them," LaBarbera said. "There wasn't a whole lot of room out there and they played a pretty tight game. They got a couple of bounces and it went their way."

Phoenix cut the lead to one when Yandle one-timed a pass from Raffi Torres past Elliott from the bottom of the right circle with 6:21 to go.

Notes

LaBarbera was starting in place of Mike Smith, out with an undisclosed lower body injury. ... Tkachuk is the second player who spent the bulk of his career with the franchise in Phoenix to be inducted into the team's Ring of Honor, following defenseman Teppo Numminen. Steen's father, Tomas, also is in the Coyotes' Ring of Honor.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Scoreboard
St. Louis  (20-10-4) «0213
Phoenix (18-14-3)0112
Three Stars
M. D'Agostini
STL


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 1
A. Steen
STL


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 0
S. Doan
PHO


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 0
Scoring Summary
1ST PERIOD
None
2ND PERIOD
07:12 - Alexander Steen (12), Wrist Shot. Assist: Pietrangelo
07:56 - Shane Doan (9), Wrist Shot. Assist: Korpikoski, Rozsival
18:25 - Matt D'Agostini (7), Slap Shot. Assist: Polak, Grachev
3RD PERIOD
01:48 - Jason Arnott (7), Wrist Shot. Assist: Russell, D'Agostini
13:39 - Keith Yandle (5), Slap Shot. Assist: Torres, O'Reilly
Penalty Summary
1ST PERIOD
08:41Backes, 2 min, Interference
19:44Yandle, 2 min, High-Sticking
19:44Yandle, 2 min, High-Sticking
2ND PERIOD
42.0Perron, 2 min, Tripping
11:02Russell, 2 min, Tripping
14:51Backes, 2 min, High-Sticking
3RD PERIOD
17:07Schlemko, 2 min, Hooking
20:00Whitney, 10 min, Misconduct
Shots On Goal
 123T
STL57618
PHO710926
 
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Wash 3 Final
NJ 4
Phi 2 Final
NYR 4
Fla 0 Final
Bos 8
Ott 1 Final
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Car 2
Tor 5 Final
NYI 3
Pitt 4 Final
Wpg 1
Nash 3 Final
Dal 6
TB 1 Final
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Colo 2
Cal 3 Final
Van 1
LA 1 Final
SJ 2