The Arizona Coyotes have not had many reasons to smile this season. But Louis Domingue's first win of the season is one of them.
After a sloppy start, the Arizona Coyotes rallied from two goals down to win 3-2 over the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Center on Sunday afternoon.
The poor defensive work that did Arizona in against Ottawa returned almost immediately in this game as well. Alex Galchenyuk received an extra generous cushion of space between four Coyotes defenders to rifle a shot past Domingue at just 1:15 of the first period.
Galchenyuk would score again at 4:55 of the first after being left uncovered in front of Domingue. The young netminder got a piece of it but was unable to catch the shot as it fluttered into the net shortly after an Antoine Vermette minor penalty expired. Arizona would end the frame tied in shots with nine apiece, with Tobias Rieder and Michael Stone narrowly missing goals.
The second period was a goaltending show between Domingue and Montreal netminder Dustin Tokarski. Both made several acrobatic saves as the game opened up a little bit more than the first. Arizona ultimately scored on the power play late in the period, when Lauri Korpikoski deflected a Martin Erat shot through Tokarski's legs at 17:43. It would be reviewed, but the call would stand as it appeared that the puck hit Korpikoski's stick just below the crossbar.
Arizona kept on coming to start the third. At just :32, Oliver Ekman-Larsson threw a bad-angle shot towards the net that somehow went past Tokarski to tie the score at two. Shortly after that, Lauri Korpikoski would score his second of the game, again on the power play, by banking the puck in off of Lars Eller's back as Tokarski went across the crease to challenge the cross-ice pass. The tally came at 3:17 of the third.
Arizona continued to attack for much of the third period, keeping the puck away from Domingue for the most part. The Canadiens were unable to muster much offense down the stretch, and the shots they did send towards the net were stopped by Domingue. Montreal challenged hard at the end of the third with their net empty, but Arizona held on for the 3-2 victory.
Our Three Stars of the Game
- 3rd Star - Alex Galchenyuk - The American scored both of Montreal's goals. He had a great day offensively, while the rest of the Habs sputtered.
- 2nd Star- Lauri Korpikoski - The Korpedo was at the right places at the right times today. He opened the scoring on a deflection and banked the game-winner off the back of a Hab.
- 1st Star - Louis Domingue - The rookie netminder wasn't challenged much, but he made 18 of 20 saves and prevented the Coyotes from falling too far behind. Congrats to Domingue on his first career victory.
- For the Montreal reaction, check out Eyes On The Prize
- Martin Hanzal and Joe Vitale missed today's game after missing yesterday's contest as well.
- Antoine Vermette was a beast in the faceoff circle. He won 16 of 18 in the first two periods, and 23 of 29 overall.
- Montreal took 10 shots in the first period, and only took 10 more the rest of the game.
- Keith Yandle registered the secondary assist on both Coyotes' power play goals. He has 30 helpers on the year.
- Special teams swung the game for Arizona. They were a perfect two-for-two on both the power play and the penalty kill.
- Despite the massive shot differential, the Coyotes narrowly won the Corsi battle 56-53 after Montreal launched multiple shot attempts in the closing minutes.
Arizona finishes off its season long road trip Tuesday night when they play the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena. Puck drop is at 5 PM Arizona time.