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Vrbata's OT Winner Helps Coyotes Down Rival Stars

The Phoenix Coyotes continued their trend as one of the streakiest teams in the NHL on Wednesday night, when they won their third consecutive game. Phoenix downed the division rival Dallas Stars on the road, winning a 3-2 overtime thriller.

The win is Phoenix's third in a row, after recording consecutive shutouts at home. This recent streak comes after the Coyotes lost four of five, including a 6-0 embarrassment to the Vancouver Canucks.

Despite the fact that Jason LaBarbera hadn't started a game since January 10th, it was Ilya Bryzgalov back in net, coming off back-to-back shutouts.

Steve Ott scored midway through the first to open the scoring for the Stars, who had lost three in a row, and five of six, heading into Wednesday. Brad Richards flipped a nifty pass to Ott in front of the net, who ripped it past a defenseless Bryzgalov.

Michal Rozsival tied it towards the end of the period, recording his first point as a Coyote. After a brief scrum in front of the net, Rozsvial took the free puck and slipped it past an out-of-position Kari Lehtonen.

The next Dallas lead lasted a bit longer than their first. All Star Brad Richards slipped one past Bryzgalov early in the second. After Nicklas Grossman lost the puck en route to the net, Richards fired it past Bryzgalov to give Dallas the 2-1 lead.

Phoenix would not be silenced, however. Mikkel Boedker took the puck nearly coast-to-coast, dished it to Ray Whitney, who crossed it back to Boedker for him to bury it and tie the game.

Despite the Coyotes outplaying the Stars for the majority of the game, it took overtime to decide the winner. After a few quick passes in the Dallas zone, Radim Vrbata made a nifty move to get free and fired a wrist shot past Lehtonen for the game-winner.

With the win, the Coyotes creep just one point behind the struggling stars, with 65 on the season. Phoenix is now off until Saturday, where they face another crucial match. While they'll be playing at home, it will feel almost like a road atmosphere when they host the Chicago Blackhawks, fresh off their acquisition of Michael Frolik.