Wild lose 2-goal lead in 3rd period, fall to Coyotes
ST. PAUL, Minn. — The Arizona Coyotes struggled to do almost anything right for two periods Tuesday. Early in the third period, they could do no wrong.
Josh Archibald had two goals and an assist, and the Coyotes rallied from a two-goal, third-period deficit to defeat the Wild 4-3.
Minnesota led 3-1 after two periods and appeared to have the game in hand after a dominant second period. The Coyotes didn’t register a shot on goal in the first 17 minutes of the second.
But Arizona broke loose with a three-goal flurry in the first 8:39 of the third to pull ahead and held on for the win.
“The overall mood was good,” defenseman Alex Goligoski said of the Coyotes locker room during the second intermission. “No one was really going crazy, banging sticks or anything. It was just like, ‘Alright, that one’s over. Let’s get one here early and see what happens.'”
And that’s exactly what happened, as Archibald scored his first goal of the season to pull the Coyotes to within one 3:07 into the third. Lawson Crouse, who scored Arizona’s first goal, picked up a turnover in the Minnesota zone and fed Archibald, who beat Devyn Dubnyk with a wrist shot from the high slot.
Minnesota challenged the goal, alleging that Archibald was offside, but video replay confirmed the call on the ice.
The Coyotes then scored twice in less than two minutes to take the lead. Michael Grabner tied it when he took a pass from Brad Richardson, who had set up behind the net, and shot past Dubnyk.
Goligoski set up the go-ahead goal when he fired a pass from behind his own net to the Minnesota blue line, where Archibald split two defensemen, took the pass in stride and beat a diving Dubnyk for his second goal of the game and a 4-3 lead for the Coyotes.
“(Goligoski) saw me coming right off the bench and made a great pass,” Archibald said. “I saw that (Dubnyk) was coming out to poke check and snap the pads on me. The puck rolled on me a little bit, kind of helped me in a way, and I was just able to chip it over him and in the net.”
Charlie Coyle, Zach Parise and Jason Zucker scored as the Wild took command through two periods. Jared Spurgeon assisted on all three goals, matching his career high for assists in a game.
But for the third time in 10 days, the Wild suffered a third-period collapse at home. On Nov. 17, they led Buffalo 2-1 in the third period and lost 3-2. Four days later they entered the third period leading Ottawa 4-1. The Senators rallied to tie the game before Minnesota scored the last two in a 6-4 win.
For a team fighting for position in the tough Central Division, it’s a trend that Wild players know they need to reverse.
“We’ve got to mature as a group. It’s the same stuff that’s happening,” Spurgeon said. “We’ve got to fix it now or we’re not going to go anywhere.”
Dubnyk, who missed Minnesota’s last game with a stomach bug, stopped 10 of 14 shots.
“It’s a strange little three-game stretch here,” said Dubnyk, who was in the nets for all three recent third-period collapses. “But the worst thing you can do is let it affect the things that have been going well here.”
Antti Raanta stopped 17 of 20 shots before leaving with a lower-body injury after two periods. Rookie Adin Hill stopped all five Minnesota shots in the third period to help the Coyotes snap a four-game losing streak.
“It was unbelievable actually how the team rallied together there,” Hill said. “We played with some desperation and found a way to put the puck in the net and get the job done tonight.”
NOTES: F Nick Schmaltz made his debut with the Coyotes on Wednesday. Schmaltz was acquired from the Chicago Blackhawks in a trade for forwards Brendan Perlini and Dylan Strome. … The Coyotes won for the first time (1-10-1) when trailing after two periods. … Minnesota is now 6-2-1 when leading after two. … Dumba has a point in seven straight games, tying the franchise record scoring streak for a defenseman.
Coyotes: At Nashville on Thursday night.
Wild: At Columbus on Thursday.