Vrbata’s hat trick leads Coyotes past Rangers

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Updated: October 4, 2013

Glendale, AZ (SportsNetwork.com) – Radim Vrbata notched a hat trick to lead
the Phoenix Coyotes in a 4-1 win over the New York Rangers to open the season.

Kyle Chipchura scored the other goal while Mike Smith made 23 saves for the
Coyotes, who finished in last place of the Pacific Division last season.

“We competed well. We played how we need to play to be successful,” Coyotes
head coach Dave Tippett said.

Marc Staal had the only goal of the game for the Rangers, while Henrik
Lundqvist posted 28 saves for New York, which were eliminated in the second
round of the playoffs last season by the Boston Bruins.

With the score tied in the second period, Vrbata scored his first of the game
and gave his team a 2-1 lead as several shots were stopped before Vrbata got
his own rebound back and snapped it in at 7:05.

“That second goal really turned the game back to their favor,” Lundqvist said.

The game stayed that way until the third period while Phoenix was on the power
play. A left circle faceoff win saw the team control the puck before Keith
Yandle fired a shot on net from the left point that Vrbata redirected past
Lundqvist at 1:10.

It was a 4-1 game six minutes later as Vrbata caused a turnover to the left of
the net and, after centering it to Martin Hanzal, jammed it in from the low
left side.

The Coyotes scored the first goal of the game at 3:36 of the first period as
Rob Klinkhammer centered the puck from the right of the net and Chipchura one-
timed it home.

New York tied the game at 3:38 of the second period as a nice passing play saw
Staal finish it off with a high shot from the left wing that beat Smith to the
blocker side for a power-play goal.

Game Notes

Vrbata’s last hat trick came on the final day of last season and he now has
five on his career … Phoenix was 1-for-3 on the power play while New York
went 1-for-4 … Phoenix plays at San Jose on Saturday … The Rangers have
off until Monday when it plays in Los Angeles … New York had won three
straight against Phoenix.