DENVER (AP) — Corey Perry scored twice, including the goal-ahead goal with 56.9 seconds remaining, and the Anaheim Ducks beat the Colorado Avalanche 5-3 on Friday night. Perry knocked in the winner shortly after Mikko Rantanen was whistled for a high-sticking penalty. Hampus Lindholm added an empty-netter to seal the victory.
Perry, Ryan Getzlaf and Daniel Sprong all scored in the second period as the Ducks erased a 2-0 deficit. Colorado’s Sven Andrighetto tied the game at 3 with 11:18 remaining, setting the stage for Perry.
The Ducks were coming off a 6-1 loss in Arizona the night before, but were the more energetic team most of the night.
Gibson had 12 of his 41 saves in the third period. He’s now 7-2 in his career against Colorado.
A three-day break energized the Avalanche early as they got goals from Nathan MacKinnon and Rantanen in the first period. Semyon Varlamov made 32 saves.
With 11 games to play, Colorado now trails the Coyotes by five points for the final wild card in the Western Conference.
Andrighetto tied the game with his first goal since Feb. 14. After that, Gibson proceeded to make two big saves, one by knocking the puck away from the goal line with his stick and another by stopping Nikita Zadorov on a breakaway.
Perry started the Ducks rolling in the second period with his fourth goal of the season. Just 1:15 later, Getzlaf got into the act. Sprong then knocked in another to give Anaheim the lead and silence the crowd.
The Avalanche used long passes to set up both goals in the first period. On the first, Samuel Girard sent a deep strike to J.T. Compher, who fed it over to MacKinnon for the score. On a power play late in the period, Tyson Barrie lined a lengthy pass to Rantanen, who lifted a backhand shot over Gibson.
Denver native and Anaheim forward Troy Terry had a large contingent of family and friends on hand as he played at Pepsi Center for the first time in his NHL career.
“It’s pretty special for me, to grow up here and now be back and playing against the Avalanche,” said Terry, who also played down the road at the University of Denver.
NOTES: Ducks F Ryan Kesler missed a fifth game with a hip injury. “I have no timeline. I don’t know when he’s coming back,” general manager and interim coach Bob Murray said. … Avalanche F Tyson Jost was taken out to dinner by his teammates to celebrate his 21st birthday on Thursday. … Colorado captain Gabriel Landeskog was sidelined a third straight game with an upper-body injury. … F Matt Calvert took a shot off his left glove and was seen shaking his hand on the bench.
Ducks: Start a three-game homestand Sunday against Florida.
Avalanche: Finish a four-game homestand Sunday against New Jersey.
By PAT GRAHAM AP Sports Writer
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