NHL: Phoenix 4, St. Louis 1

April 6, 2012 at 11:10 PM
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ST. LOUIS, April 6 (UPI) -- Mike Smith came up short in his bid for a fourth straight shutout Friday, but he made 31 saves while carrying the Phoenix Coyotes to a 4-1 win over St. Louis.

The Coyotes vaulted past Los Angeles into first place by a point in the Pacific Division. The regular-season ends Saturday, with Phoenix meeting Minnesota and Los Angeles taking on San Jose.

St. Louis lost its fourth in a row and missed a chance to move into a tie with Vancouver for the most points in the Western Conference. The Blues have the tiebreak advantage over Vancouver but they need to win Saturday while Vancouver loses for that to make any difference.

Keith Yandle put Phoenix in front 2:13 into the game but Patrik Berglund finally ended Smith's scoreless streak by tipping in a shot late in the opening period.

Radim Vrbata then gave the Coyotes the lead 5:44 into the second and Phoenix then came up with goals from Shane Doan and Mikkel Boedker.

It was the Coyotes' fourth straight win.

Brian Elliott allowed the four Phoenix goals on 32 shots.

Every NHL team will be in action Saturday on the final day of the campaign. All 16 playoff berths have been filled, but seedings and playoff matchups are still to be determined in both conferences.

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