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Fontaine Notches Hat Trick To Lead Wild To Win Thursday

Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

The Minnesota Wild defeated the Phoenix Coyotes 4-1 Thursday night in Glendale, Arizona to earn their fourth straight win. Wild rookie forward Justin Fontaine, a former UMD Bulldog, scored three goals to lead the Wild to the victory.

Fontaine scored the first period’s only goal with just over a minute remaining to give Minnesota a 1-0 lead at the first intermission. The Wild were outshot by Phoenix 15-7 in the opening period.

The Coyotes tied the game just over two minutes into the second period on the power play. Phoenix outshot Minnesota 13-8 in the second period and 28-15 through two.

Kyle Brodziak scored the eventual game winning goal at 3:21 of the third period that gave the Wild a 2-1 lead.

Fontaine scored his second goal of the game on a power play at 7:56 of the third period on a bizarre play that saw Coyotes goalie Mike Smith misplay a puck only to watch Fontaine smack in into a wide open net.

The Wild finished the scoring, and Fontaine his hat trick, on an empty net goal with just over a minute left in the game. Fontaine now has 11 goals on the season, third on the team behind Jason Pominville (18) and Zach Parise (15).

Niklas Backstrom made 39 saves to earn the win for Minnesota. Mike Smith made 25 saves on 28 shots for Phoenix.

The Wild host Colorado on Saturday night at Xcel Energy Center.

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