Stone scores twice in 3rd, Golden Knights beat Coyotes 5-2
LAS VEGAS (AP) — Mark Stone had many opportunities to score in the first two periods Wednesday night with several high-quality chances, but couldn’t get the puck past Arizona Coyotes goalie Karel Vejmelka.
More chances came in the third period, and Stone didn’t let those go to waste.
He put Vegas ahead for good with a power-play goal 8:56 into the final period and later scored short-handed to help the Golden Knights end a dry spell at home with a 5-2 victory.
Stone, who also had an assist, became the first player in Knights history with a power-play and short-handed goal in the same game.
“It would’ve been nice to capitalize on them earlier in the game,” Stone said. “In between periods, 1-1, felt we should’ve had 10. But we stuck with it, and I thought we did a good job. We were drawing penalties. We gave ourselves four or five chances on the power play, which leads to goals.”
The Knights lost six of their previous seven games at home, but improved to 11-3 all-time against Arizona in Las Vegas and 18-7 overall against the Coyotes.
“Some lessons learned from our recent play,” Golden Knights coach Bruce Cassidy said. “Going into the third period, when is it ever going to go in here, right? Maybe this is a sign of things to come for us, and hopefully Friday we’ll continue to get some breaks.”
Stone scored his 13th and 14th goals as part of a four-goal third period by the Knights that followed a 1-1 tie after two. His first goal came on a tip-in off Alex Pietrangelo’s drive from the point to put Vegas ahead 2-1.
In an effort to reverse the problems at home, the Golden Knights put left wing Michael Amadio on the first line with right wing Stone and center Chandler Stephenson. Amadio actually moved into that spot in the second period of Monday’s 3-2 loss to the Buffalo Sabres, sending Phil Kessel back to the third line.
It paid off as Stone was dominant all game with 13 shots, including eight on goal, as well as his assist for a three-point night. Also on that top line, Amadio scored and Stephenson had two assists.
Arizona’s Christian Fischer had a goal and an assist.
The Knights came out aggressive, controlling the first period and outshooting the Coyotes 13-4. Stone had two terrific chances, including one from point-blank range. The Coyotes weathered the barrage to keep the game scoreless after one.
“I think our first period we were feeling good,” Stephenson said. “We were playing quick and put them on their heels. We tried to keep our foot on the gas pedal.”
Vegas finally broke through at 3:28 of the second when defenseman Danil Miromanov blasted in a power-play goal. The good feelings for the Knights ended just 1:20 later, however, when Arizona defenseman Juuso Valimaki stuffed in a shot from the side of the net.
“Stupidity, mistakes, turnovers, lack of effort on back-check,” Coyotes coach André Tourigny said. “That’s too bad because … we played a good game. We did a lot of good things against a really good team. We’re right there. We’re one goal, one shot away, and you could not stay with it.”
NOTES: Stephenson extended his point streak to six games (two goals, eight assists). Vegas teammate Reilly Smith is at five games (five goals, three assists) and Pietrangelo at three games (three assists). ... Fischer is one goal short of 50 in his career.
Coyotes: At home against Los Angeles on Friday.
Golden Knights: At home against St. Louis on Friday.
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