Penguins Come From Behind To Nip Coyotes 4-3

The Coyotes get oh-so-close to getting a win, with good effort and almost enough goals. Alas, those pesky Penguins came back to steal one.

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Penguins Come From Behind To Nip Coyotes 4-3

Glendale, AZ (Sports Network) - Mark Letestu scored the only goal of the shootout on the last attempt to lift Pittsburgh to a 4-3 come-from-behind win over Phoenix at Jobing.com Arena.

Letestu beat Ilya Bryzgalov with a wrist shot through the five-hole in his first career shootout try, as the Penguins halted a two-game slide and won for just the second time in their last seven games.

Brent Johnson took over early in the first period for an ineffective Marc- Andre Fleury and turned away 22 of the 23 shots he faced in relief to grab the win.

"In this situation we needed Johnny to come in and get us some saves," said Pittsburgh head coach Dan Bylsma. "He gave us a chance to get our feet underneath us and he did and we were able to pull it out."

Wojtek Wolski had a goal and an assist for the Coyotes, who have lost three of their last four games.

Bryzgalov allowed three goals on 36 shots in regulation and suffered the defeat.

"I thought we competed hard and did some good things out there," said Phoenix head coach Dave Tippett. "We've gotta keep pounding away. You don't always get rewarded for it, but hard work eventually pays off."

Radim Vrbata and Sidney Crosby were stopped in the first round of the shootout before Wolski and Kris Letang were denied in round two.

Lauri Korpikoski shot wide before Letestu scored the game-winner to end the Pens' four-game road trip on a positive note.

Phoenix scored just 2:35 into the game when Wolski carried down the right side on a 2-on-2 and passed to Belanger, who got behind the defense before going backhand to forehand to beat Fleury shortside

Vrbata made a cross ice pass to Ray Whitney, who carried into the Penguins zone on the left side and dropped a pass at the top of the left circle for Vrbata, who made his way to the net, and, as he was being taken down, slid a backhander past Fleury as the net came dislodged, to make it 2-0, 6:56 into the contest.

Fleury was then removed from the game and replaced by Johnson.

Crosby converted a giveaway into the visitors first goal 76 seconds into the middle session before Malkin tallied three minutes later to tie the score. The Russian sped down the right side and sent a backhand pass toward the slot that was blocked. The puck came right back to him and he wristed it past Bryzgalov.

Phoenix regained the lead with 4:24 to go in the period when Wolski worked his way out of a logjam and wristed a shot off the inside of Johnson's pad and into the net.

Pittsburgh got the game even again on the power play when Letestu passed from behind the net through the crease to Chris Kunitz, who one-timed it home with 34 ticks remaining.

Pittsburgh's last victory over the Coyotes came at Mellon Arena on December 3, 2007...Johnson improved to 6-1-1 on the season...He earned his fifth win in 11 games against Phoenix...Kunitz played in his 400th career game...He has 10 goals and 21 points in 29 outings versus the Coyotes...Bryzgalov is 2-2-0 in four career games against the Pens...Vrbata has six goals and 12 points in 12 career matches versus Pittsburgh...Wolski has three goals and six points in four career outings against the Pens...The Penguins were 1-for-5 on the power play while the Coyotes were 0-for-4 with the man advantage.

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Penguins Visit Glendale, Coyotes Look To Bounce Back, 6 P.M. AZT

(Sports Network) - The Penguins' power-play drought may be over, but their recent struggles on the ice are not. Pittsburgh will try to avoid a third straight loss both overall and to the Phoenix Coyotes in this evening's matchup at Jobing.com Arena.

The Penguins got their four-game road trip off to a good start with a shut-out win over Carolina last Saturday, but have since dropped tests in Dallas and Anaheim to give the club losses in five of six.

Despite two goals from Sidney Crosby last night, the first of his career versus the Ducks that snapped a five-game goal-scoring drought, Pittsburgh suffered a 3-2 setback to Anaheim. Crosby's first goal came on the power play late in the second period to snap his club's 0-for-29 slide on the man advantage.

Kris Letang assisted on both Crosby goals and Marc-Andre Fleury made just 16 saves in net.

"We came out and we played physical tonight," said Penguins' forward Mike Rupp. "Our team is built to play that way and we haven't been consistent with it. So, I think over the course of 60 minutes tonight, we played a pretty good brand of hockey that we can be proud of. Over the course of 82 games, we like our chances playing that way."

Crosby has one goal and four assists in five career games versus the Coyotes, who have won two straight and eight of their last 11 over the Penguins. That includes a 3-0 shutout last season in Pittsburgh -- sparked by 24 saves from Ilya Bryzgalov -- and Phoenix snapped a two-game home slide to the Pens in the last meeting in the desert on Oct. 30, 2008.

Bryzgalov struggled in net last night for the Coyotes, yielding three goals on 18 shots before getting pulled early in a 6-3 setback to Dallas. Jason LaBarbera also allowed three goals in relief on 13 shots.

"It was disappointing. We got behind early -- they got some breaks on some pucks that bounced off our guys and into the net," said Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett. "We couldn't create any breaks ourselves. Usually, when a team gets breaks like that, they earn those breaks."

Shane Doan scored his first goal of the season for the Coyotes and has eight in 17 career meetings with the Penguins.

Sami Lepisto and Lauri Korpikoski also scored for Phoenix, which has dropped five of its last seven and has still yet to win consecutive games this season.

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