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Big OT win in Big D
S.J. 3 points behind Vancouver
4/3/06 - by Mike Lee

The Sharks learned something from their overtime loss to the Phoenix Coyotes on Saturday night. Figuring that it's better to give than to receive, San Jose doled out a little taste of overtime defeat by knocking off the host Dallas Stars on Monday night. Joe Thornton bagged a power play goal with 20 seconds to play in the extra session to help the Sharks keep pace in the Western Conference playoff race.

San Jose had difficulties scoring even strength against Dallas, despite out-shooting the Stars 34-18, so they went the special teams route with a pair of power play goals and a short handed goal to take two important points.

Thornton converted on a sweeping shot from the right dot after Niko Kapanen was whistled for hooking with 1:38 remaining in the extra period. With time winding down and the Sharks desperate to avoid a shootout with arguably the league's best shootout team, San Jose managed to keep the puck in the Stars zone after a wild series of scoring chances.

After taking a centering pass from Tom Preissing, Patrick Marleau had an opportunity to shoot from the slot but elected to dish the puck to Thornton because a Stars defender was in his shooting lane. Thornton delivered by roofing a shot over Stars goaltender Marty Turco's right shoulder.

"I'm glad Joe scored the goal," Sharks head coach Ron Wilson said. "He's been struggling lately."

It was a game the Sharks had to win with Los Angeles also winning on Monday night, but it was also a game the Sharks deserved to win. They controlled the tempo most of the evening and had Turco on his heels all night.

"It would have been an awful feeling had we not prevailed in overtime," Wilson said. "We got rewarded for our hard work."

After Jere Lehtinen staked the Stars to an early 1-0 lead, Marleau tied the game with a nifty goal five minutes into the 2nd period. With Jon Klemm in the box for holding, Marleau swatted a deflection out of the air from the Stars doorstep after Steve Bernier bounced a shot off Turco's pads from in tight.

San Jose took the lead for the first time in the game midway through the 3rd period on a shirt-handed goal by Ville Nieminen. The trade deadline acquisition had a great read on Preissing's angle on a loose puck and headed up ice as the Sharks defender chipped the turnover to him.

Nieminen deeked Turco with a move to his right, before cutting back to his left and backhanding a shot top shelf.

Jason Arnott knotted things back up at 2-2 with jus under two minutes to play in regulation on the only even strength goal of the night.

"It's a challenge when we're playing desperate teams," Stars coach Dave Tippett said. "We looked tired. Even when we were pushing, we looked tired. We have to get the guys some rest. But I think this adversity can be good for us if we use it to our advantage."

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1 2 3OT T
SJ 0 1 11 3
DAL 1 0 10 2
1st period - 1, Dallas, Lehtinen 32 (Zubov, Modano), 10:45, (pp). Penalty - Thornton, SJS (tripping), 10:06.
2nd period - 2, San Jose, Marleau 33 (Bernier, Ehrhoff), 5:06, (pp).
3rd period - 3, San Jose, Nieminen 7 (Preissing, McCauley), 10:44, (sh). 4, Dallas, Arnott 30 (Morrow, Barnes), 18:13.
Overtime - 5, San Jose, Thornton 26 (Marleau, Preissing), 4:39, (pp). Penalty - Kapanen, DAL (hooking), 3:22.
1st period - J. Thornton, SJS (tripping), 10:06.
2nd period - Gorges, SJS (tripping), 1:37; Klemm, DAL (holding), 4:57; Mitchell, DAL (high-sticking), 5:58; Thornton, SJS (high-sticking), 15:20; Kapanen, DAL (hooking), 17:16; Zubov, DAL (hooking), 18:56; Barnes, DAL (slashing), 19:44.
3rd period - Smith, SJS (tripping), 5:35; Thornton, SJS, major (fighting), 5:35; Perrott, DAL, major (fighting), 5:35; Miettinen, DAL (holding), 7:04; Smith, SJS (holding), 10:03; Turco, DAL, served by Ott (tripping), 19:01.
Overtime - Kapanen, DAL (holding), 3:22.
  Shots Saves
SJ - Toskala 18 16
DAL - Turco 34 31
Shots On Goal
1 2 3OT T
SJ 12 12 46 34
DAL 6 3 72 18
Power Play Conversion
SJ 2 of 8
DAL 1 of 5
3 Stars of the Game
Joe Thornton
Patrick Marleau
Tom Preissing
Referees: Tim Peel, Kevin Pollock. Linesmen: Tim Nowak, Pierre Racicot.

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