Soucy scores twice for Kraken in 4-2 win over Coyotes
GLENDALE, Ariz. (AP) — Carson Soucy had two goals and Daniel Sprong scored in his first game with Seattle to lead the Kraken to a 4-2 victory over the Arizona Coyotes on Tuesday night.
Soucy scored the first and last goal in a five-goal second period and Morgan Geekie added one in the third as the expansion Kraken won their third game in the last four while beating Arizona for the first time in three meetings.
“I’m just trying to make the most of the opportunity,” said Soucy, a defenseman who set his career high with nine goals and took shifts on the power play after captain Mark Giordano was traded Monday.
“Losing Gio, trying to make the most of it on the power play. Just trying to contribute and help the team get a win. Obviously it sucks losing guys, but you have to take it and make the most of your opportunity.”
Soucy’s go-ahead goal late in the second period came seven seconds after the Coyotes killed a penalty but before they could get back into defensive position.
Nick Schmaltz and Nick Ritchie scored for the Coyotes, who have lost three in a row after winning six of seven in their best stretch of the season.
Sprong, acquired from Washington at Monday’s trade deadline, scored his ninth goal of the season. He skated 14 minutes for the Capitals in Dallas on Sunday.
“I just felt good to be out there after yesterday’s crazy day,” said Sprong, who joined the Kraken on Monday. “I was a little snake-bit in (Washington). I know I can shoot the puck. I got an opportunity, and making the most of it.”
Phillipp Grubauer made 23 saves for the Kraken, who gave up five goals in each of their two losses to Arizona
Arizona goalie Karel Vejmelka stopped 35 shots in his first appearance since signing a three-year contract extension worth about $8 million on Monday.
“The group worked hard,” Seattle coach Dave Hakstol said.
After a scoreless first period with few good scoring chances, the teams combined for five goals in the second — three in a 62-second span midway through the period.
Schmaltz’s 19th goal on a power play started the flurry at 8:11. Schmaltz took a backhand feed from Clayton Keller and punched it in from the slot. Arizona had the man advantage after Haydn Fleury was penalized for cross-checking Keller behind the Kraken net.
Soucy tied it 18 seconds later, when his shot from the deep slot through a screen hit the crossbar and bounced in.
“I try to get it there when I see numbers in front,” Soucy said. “Their goalie obviously didn’t see it. It was a great job of our forwards getting to the net.”
Ritchie gave Arizona a 2-1 lead at 9:13 when he skated in alone on the right side after a cross-ice pass from Loui Eriksson and beat Grubauer to the glove side.
Sprong’s power-play goal tied it 2-all at 13:39 of the second, when his wrist shot from the top of the right circle got over Vejmelka’s blocker.
“You can see it’s a weapon,” Hakstol said of Sprong’s shot. “We hadn’t got a whole lot going on the power play in the second, so it was a nice way for him to take some of the pressure off the power play by coming down the wing and finding the far side of the net.”
Soucy’s second goal came on a low wrist shot from the right circle for a 3-2 Kraken lead.
Geekie found an open side at 12:38 of the third period for a 4-2 edge.
“I saw a lack of fight,” Coyotes coach Andre Tourigny said. “I saw a lack of soul a little bit. We have a lot of frustration, for whatever reason. We just have to regroup and push all together. We see a lot of frustration.”
NOTES: The Coyotes signed Jack McBain to a two-year, entry-level contract Monday with a salary cap hit of $884,000 after he was acquired in a deadline-day trade with Minnesota. McBain had 33 points in 24 games with Boston College this season. ... Kraken D Haydn Fleury sustained an undisclosed injury early in the second period and did not return. ... Vejmelka has played 37 games, second among NHL rookie goaltenders. … Sprong became the first in-season trade acquisition in Seattle history. He is the only active NHL player from the Netherlands. … Coyotes D Jakob Chychrun (lower body) and J.J. Moser (upper body) were scratched. General manager Bill Armstrong said in a TV interview after the first period that the Coyotes will entertain offers for Chychrun in the offseason. … Coyotes forward Phil Kessel played in his 963rd consecutive game, one short of tying Doug Jarvis for the second-longest streak in league history. … Ritchie has six goals and eight points in 12 games with the Coyotes since being acquired from Toronto.
Kraken: At the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday night.
Coyotes: At the Calgary Flames on Friday night.
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