- The Washington Times - Friday, March 20, 2009

GLENDALE, ARIZ. (AP) - Bobby Ryan knocked in the deciding goal in a shootout and the Anaheim Ducks stayed in the thick of the Western Conference playoff race with a 3-2 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes on Thursday night.

Todd Marchant had a pair of primary assists for the Ducks, who climbed into a tie with idle Dallas and Minnesota for ninth place with 74 points. The top eight teams in the conference will make the playoffs.

Anaheim, coming off a 4-3 overtime victory at home over Nashville on Wednesday night, took a 2-1 lead when Phoenix’s Kyle Turris deflected the puck into his own net with 7:01 to play.

The Coyotes tied it on Matthew Lombardi’s goal with 2:31 left in regulation. He took a pass in the crease from Scottie Upshall, and knocked it off the right post and across the line for the score.

After Ryan’s shootout goal, Lombardi missed his attempt to allow Anaheim to escape with the victory.

Turris’ inadvertent goal came when Anaheim’s Petteri Nokelainen skidded into the net just as the puck was passed in front of the net by Marchant. Turris was there to knock the puck away, but it went in instead.

Officials reviewed he play, then Nokelainen was credited with the goal, his second of the season, with Marchant getting the assist.

The Ducks scored just 3:05 into the game on a goal by Drew Miller, called up from Iowa of the American Hockey League earlier in the day.

But Phoenix dominated the period after that, tying it at 1 when Zbynek Michalek took a pass from Mikkel Boedker and ripped a slap shot past goalie Jonas Hiller at the 7:57 mark.

The teams were scoreless in the second period, Anaheim outshooting the Coyotes 9-7 in the period.

This was the last of the Ducks’ 15 games on consecutive nights.

Notes:@ Anaheim is 7-8-0 in the second half of back-to-back nights. … Miller is in his third stint with Anaheim after spending most of the season in the minors. … Anaheim’s Rob Niedermayer played in his 1,000th NHL game. He and teammate Scott Niedermayer are the fourth pair of brothers in league history to reach 1,000 games played apiece.

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