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Jack McBain, Coyotes keep home wins coming, beat Leafs

Dec 29, 2022; Tempe, Arizona, USA; Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews (34) against Arizona Coyotes goalie Karel Vejmelka (70) in the second period at Mullett Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Jack McBain scored two goals, including the game-winner with 6:17 remaining, and Karel Vejmelka made 29 saves as the Arizona Coyotes defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs 6-3 on Thursday night in Tempe, Ariz.

Barrett Hayton had a goal and two assists, Nick Bjugstad had a goal and an assist, and Jakob Chychrun and J.J. Moser also scored goals for Arizona, which won its third straight game while improving to 6-1-1 in its last eight home games.

Calle Jarnkrok, Pontus Holmberg and Alexander Kerfoot scored goals for Toronto, which had a three-game winning streak snapped. Conor Timmins added two assists and Matt Murray made 17 saves for the Maple Leafs.

Arizona needed just 46 seconds to take a 1-0 lead. Bjugstad stole the puck from Auston Matthews along the right boards and then cut in and flipped in a backhand shot past Murray’s blocker side for his eighth goal of the season.

Toronto tied it at the 9:02 mark with a power-play goal. Holmberg deflected a Timmins shot from the left point for his third goal of the season.

Jarnkrok give the Maple Leafs a 2-1 lead 3 1/2 minutes later with another power-play goal, firing a wrist shot from the right circle into the far corner past Vejmelka’s glove side for his eighth goal of the season.

Arizona tied it again at the 6:52 mark of the second period when Chychrun stuffed in a rebound of a Nick Ritchie shot through Murray’s pads for his fourth goal of the season.

Kerfoot put Toronto back in front midway through the period with his sixth goal of the season, tapping in a rebound of a Mark Giordano shot into an open left side of the net.

The Coyotes tied it 3-3 early in the third on a power-play goal by Moser, who rifled a wrist shot from the top of the left circle past a screen and over Murray’s blocker for his fifth goal of the season.

McBain then tapped in a crossing pass from Lawson Crouse inside the left post with 6:17 remaining to give Arizona 4-3 lead. The Maple Leafs pulled Murray for an extra attacker, but McBain sealed the win with an empty-netter with 2:22 left, his sixth goal of the season. Hayton added another empty-netter with 49 seconds to go.

–Field Level Media