Blues 3, Coyotes 2

Associated Press  |  Last updated December 24, 2011
Alexander Steen scored his team-leading 12th goal and Brian Elliott made 24 saves to help the streaking St. Louis Blues beat the Phoenix Coyotes 3-2 on Friday night. Matt D'Agostini and Jason Arnott also scored and Evgeny Grachev had a pair of assists 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. Shane Doan and Keith Yandle scored for the Coyotes, who had won two in a row. 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. 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. 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. ... Before the game, the Coyotes inducted former captain Keith Tkachuk into the team's Ring of Honor, the second player who spent the bulk of his career with the franchise in Phoenix to be so honored. Steen's father, Tomas, also is in the Coyotes' Ring of Honor.
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