Originally posted on Fox Sports Arizona  |  Last updated 3/19/12
Facing a two-game losing streak and a 2-6-2 start to the month of March, the Coyotes -- who never seem to know when they are beat -- rallied from 2-0 down for the second time in the last three games Sunday night, this time with less than 12 minutes left in regulation. Horribly outplayed in the second period, the Coyotes roared back with goals by Ray Whitney and Raffi Torres to force overtime before shootout goals from Mikkel Boedker and Whitney resulted in a 3-2 comeback win over the Oilers that put them back into a Western Conference playoff spot. The 400th win of head coach Dave Tippett's career -- and the first season sweep of the Oilers in franchise history -- couldn't have been more dramatic or meaningful. The Coyotes jumped from 10th to seventh in the standings and pulled even with idle Dallas for the Pacific Division lead with 83 points. Phoenix now heads to Texas for a showdown with the Stars on Tuesday and a chance to end a critical four-game road trip with six out of eight points. As much as they've fallen behind of late, the Coyotes have hardly let it faze them. Some nights they come all the way back: In four of their last seven wins, they have trailed at least 2-0 before finding their way. "Every game matters so much for us right now," said Coyotes defenseman Keith Yandle, who had a chance to win it on a penalty shot in overtime that was stopped. "We fumbled it around a bit in the first period, but I think we played our game more as the game wore on. We were able to work them down low and find a way to win." NOTES, QUOTES -- Coyotes goalie Mike Smith was named the third star of the game and probably deserved a higher accolade. Smith made 36 saves, couldn't be faulted on either Edmonton goal and made the save of the game just before the Coyotes tied it. Smith made a point-blank glove-hand stop on Lennart Petrell, and the Coyotes took the rebound the other way, with Gilbert Brule setting up Raffi Torres on the break for a blast that evened the game 2-2 with just over 2 minutes left in regulation. Smith had allowed four goals in each of his previous two starts but was sharp against the Oilers. The first Edmonton goal came on a blown offsides call, the second when he made an acrobatic stop on a deflected Ales Hemsky shot and was down and out when Hemsky got a second chance. -- The Coyotes finished their run through western Canada at 4-1-1 for the season and are now 10-1-1 over the last two years. They completed the first sweep of the Oilers (4-0-0) in franchise history and have now won four straight at Rexall Place. But the win didn't come without a cost. The Coyotes got both center Martin Hanzal and winger Radim Vrbata back for the game but lost both Vrbata and winger Taylor Pyatt to injury by the time it was over. Coach Dave Tippett said both guys "were moving around" after the game, but he wasn't sure if either would be available for Tuesday's huge game against Dallas. Vrbata has now gone 11 games without a goal since getting his 30th of the year against the Kings on Feb. 21. The Coyotes need him in the lineup and need him scoring to help carry the team down the stretch. QUOTE TO NOTE: "(Jason LaBarbera) told me to go with the old move, and he knows the league and I trusted him." -- Coyotes RW Mikkel Boedker, who scored in the shootout for the fourth time in seven tries this season. ROSTER REPORT -- D Keith Yandle had another interesting evening, starting with his first fight of the season 1:25 into the game with Edmonton's Lennart Pertrell. In the overtime alone, he took a two-minute kneeing penalty and was awarded a penalty shot that was stopped by Oilers goalie Devan Dubnyk. -- LW Raffi Torres keeps bringing it down the stretch. His 2-on-1 goal with just over 2 minutes left in regulation was his 14th goal of the season and his fifth in the last 10 games. He now has 14 goals, matching his season total from last season with the Canucks. -- RW Ray Whitney has points in eight straight games against his hometown team, but none was bigger than his goal 7:58 into the third period that started the Coyotes' comeback. It was his 22nd goal of the season and his 993rd career point. Whitney also added the clinching goal in the shootout, an area in which he is becoming increasingly successful. MEDICAL WATCH -- RW Radim Vrbata left Sunday night's game in the third period. -- D Adrian Aucoin (lower body) missed his second straight game and is day-to-day. -- C Kyle Chipchura (upper body) missed his 14th straight game but is practicing and close to playing.
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