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Sharks get back on track in Edmonton
3 goals in 1st helps overpower Oilers
1/9/09 - By Mike Lee

The penalty practice that Sharks head coach Todd McLellan imposed on his team after their embarrassing loss to the Calgary Flames appeared to get the message across. At least it did for one game. San Jose over powered the host Edmonton Oilers on Friday night, scoring three 1st period goals, en route to a 4-1 win at Rexall Place. Patrick Marleau scored a pair of gals and Evgeni Nabokov stopped 25 shots to pace the Sharks.

One of the things that San Jose failed to do in Calgary on Tuesday night, was to take advantage of the power play opportunities. That wasn’t the case on Friday night. A Steve Staios slashing penalty setup Devin Setogushi’s 19th goal of the season 7:54 into the game. Setoguchi took a simple drop pass from Dan Boyle at the right point, then ripped a long shot that beat Oilers goaltender Dwayne Roloson to the upper left corner of the net.

San Jose would return the favor at the midway point of the period, when rookie Brad Staubitz was sent off for tripping. Denis Grebeshkov answered with a 40-foot wrist shot from the high slot, beating Nabokov after the Sharks netminder was partially screened.

Staubitz would make amends for his penalty three minutes later with his first NHL goal. The Edmonton native cranked a shot from almost the same location as Setoguchi’s goal, which was partially deflected by Oilers defenseman Ladislav Smid’s stick. Roloson got a glove in front of the puck, but the velocity pushed it past the leather and into the Edmonton goal.

Douglas Murray was credited with the primary assist on the goal, which was his first point of the season

The back breaker came with 36 second left in the period, when sharks captain converted for this 20th goal of the season. An Oilers icing call forced a faceoff in the Oilers net and the Sharks used the advantage to convert. After winning the faceoff, San Jose moved the puck at will in the zone, including a feed from Setoguchi to Marleau as the Sharks captain cut toward the slot from the right wing boards. Marleau whipped a shot past Roloson, with Joe Thornton hovering above the crease.

Oilers head coach Craig MacTavish pulled Roloson to start the 2nd period, moving Mathieu Garon between the pipes.

Evgeni Nabokov was whistled for delay of game early in the period for dislodging the net after sliding in to the right post, but the Sharks penalty kill denied the Oilers. The Sharks special teams unit settled things down and finished the night 5 of 6 on penalty kills.

Eric Cole contributed to the final goal by taking a tripping penalty at 16:10. San Jose ’s power play capped the scoring with just under 3 minutes remaining in the period, but not before Nabokov was forced to make a sliding save on an Eathan Moreau one timer. Marleau roofed a shot from the left dot. Joe Pavelski sent a cross-ice pass to Marleau through the slot to setup the goal.

The 21 goals for Marleau come before the season’s mid-point, which is a huge turnaround from his 19 goal total for the entire 2007-08 season.

Staubitz would cap his memorable night with a brief scrap with Zach Stortini, that may land the Oilers right wing on the injured list. Stortini took exception to Staubitz hit on Smid in the corner after the hitting began to pick up. As the two jostled to restrain the others fists, Stortini got his left leg caught under Staubitz’s, hyper-extending the knee. Stortini had to be helped off the ice, in obvious pain.

San Jose would start a parade to the penalty box, with Blake, Ryane Clowe and Ehrhoff being sent off for separate infractions. Nabokov had his helmet popped of his head after Lubomir Visnovsky ripped a shot that hit the Sharks netminder square in the cage.

Edmonton almost lost another player, when Robert Nilsson lost an edge on a forecheck and crashed into the boards, banging his head awkwardly.

Nabokov put and exclamation point on the win by snatching a Marc-Antoine Pouliot shot from point blank range with just under 5 minutes to play.

Game Notes: The assist that Rob Blake recorded on Marleau’s first goal was the 500th of his career. The scorekeeper in Calgary took as assist away from Blake on Tuesday night, so Blake had to do it all over again. Sheldon Souray left the game in the 2nd period with an undisclosed injury.


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Scoring
1 2 3 T
SJ 3 1 0 4
EDM 1 0 0 1
1st period - 1, SJ, Setoguchi 19 (Boyle, Thornton), 7:54, (pp). 2, EDM, Gregeshkov 3 (Cogliano, Visnovsky), 11:15, (pp). 3, SJ, Staubitz 1 (Murray, Semenov), 14:16. 4, SJ, Marleau 20 (Setoguchi, Blake), 19:24.
2nd period - 5, SJ, Marleau 21 (Pavelski, Setoguchi), 17:05, (pp).
3rd period - None.
Penalties
1st period - Staubitz, SJ (unsportsmanlike conduct), 5:23; Staios, EDM (slashing), 7:47; Staubitz, SJ (tripping), 9:52.
2nd period - Nabokov, SJ (delay of game), 0:56; Cole, EDM (tripping), 16:10; Michalek, SJ (roughing), 16:17; Staios, EDM (roughing), 16:17; Semenov, SJ (fighting major), 17:48; Strudwick, EDM (fighting major), 17:48; Strudwick, EDM (slashing), 17:48.
3rd period - Staubitz, SJ (fighting major), 6:05; Stortini, EDM (fighting major), 6:05; Blake, SJ (cross checking), 6:29; Clowe, SJ (hooking), 8:18; Ehrhoff, SJ (holding), 11:32; Penner, EDM (holding), 17:59.
Goaltending
Shots Saves
SJ - Nabokov 26 25
EDM - Roloson 10 7
EDM - Garon 21 20
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 T
SJ 10 15 6 31
EDM 7 11 8 26
Power Play Conversion
SJ 2 of 4
EDM 1 of 6
3 Stars of the Game
Patrick Marleau
Devin Setoguchi
Evgeni Nabokov
Attendence
16,839
Officials
Referees: Rooney, Watson. Linesmen: Henderson, Rody.

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