Galiardi nets two as Avalanche end eight-game slide

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VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) -- T.J Galiardi scored twice,

Peter Budaj made 20 saves, and the Colorado Avalanche snapped an

eight-game losing streak with a surprising 4-1 victory over the

Vancouver Canucks on Sunday night.

Milan Hejduk had a goal and two assists, and Ben Guite also

scored to help Colorado snap an 0-7-1 skid and put a dent in the

Canucks' playoff positioning.

Pavol Demitra snapped Budaj's shutout bid with 4:38 left, but by

then it was too late. Coming off a 5-3 loss in Edmonton on

Saturday night and playing at home for just the second time in

the last nine games, the Canucks couldn't take advantage of an

injury-riddled Avalanche team in last place in the Western

Conference.

Vancouver only managed five shots in the first period - none

before Guite made it 2-0 7:44 into the second -- losing three

straight games for the first time since an eight-game losing

skid at the end of January. The Canucks followed that by going

20-5-1 in February and March, but are 0-2-1 in April.

Galiardi opened the scoring on a delayed penalty 7:32 into the

first, one-timing a hard shot form the slot over Roberto

Luongo's glove after Canucks defensemen Shane O'Brien and Kevin

Bieksa collided along the side boards.

Galiardi made it 4-0 with 7:56 left, beating Luongo from a sharp

angle for his third NHL goal - all coming against the Canucks -

in his seventh career game.

Vancouver remained tied with Calgary atop the Northwest

Division, and fell three points behind fourth-place Chicago in

the race for home-ice advantage in the first round of the

playoffs. The Flames, who have played one fewer game, host Los

Angeles on Monday before traveling to Vancouver for a showdown

Tuesday.

The game started with an emotional tribute and moment of silence

for the fiancee of Canucks forward Taylor Pyatt, Carly Bragnalo,

who was killed in a car crash Friday while vacationing with

family in Jamaica. Pyatt missed his second game and has been

given an indefinite leave of absence by the team.

Several Vancouver players have pledged to win for the missing

teammate, but gave a sellout crowd of 18,630 little reason to

get loud after the moment of silence.

They Canucks were outshot 26-21 by an Avalanche team in the

midst of the longest winless streak (0-7-1) since the franchise

moved to Colorado in 1995. The Avalanche did get forward Wojtek

Wolski back after missing three games to illness, and he set up

Guite's goal. But Colorado was still missing 10 regulars to

injury, including four defensemen and four top-six forwards.

Guite doubled the lead with a quick shot from inside the left

faceoff circle that went between the legs of both defenseman

Willie Mitchell and Luongo.

The Canucks finally got on the shot clock thanks to two straight

power plays shortly after Guite's goal, but couldn't beat Budaj.

Steve Bernier had the best of the few early chances, but fired

wide on a jam play in the first period and hit Budaj right on

the chest with a point-blank one-timer late in the second.

Budaj stopped Bernier again on a close-range backhander 2

minutes into the third period, and got a break when Daniel Sedin

hit the crossbar a minute later.

Hejduk made it 3-0 5 minutes into the third after a bad giveaway

by Canucks defenseman Alexander Edler in front of Luongo, who

finished with 22 saves.

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