Radim Vrbata and Antoine Vermette scored first-period goals and the Phoenix Coyotes held on to win their third in a row, 2-1 over the Florida Panthers on Thursday night.

Coyotes goalie Mike Smith had a shutout until Chris Gomez scored with 4:08 to play. Smith had 22 saves.

Phoenix has won five of six and seven of nine.

Vrbata's goal came on a power play.

The victory, coupled with Dallas' loss to Philadelphia, put the Coyotes four points ahead of the Stars for the eighth and final playoff spot in the West.

Robert Luongo had 20 saves for the Panthers.