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Sharks buck the odds and lose
SJ can't capitalize on opportunities
3/13/12 - By Mike Lee -

Statistics say that if you score first in a hockey game, you're more likely to win the game. Statistics will also say that the probability of scoring goes up significantly when you have a 5-minute power play. Somehow the Sharks managed to botch both of those on Tuesday night in Calgary, as the San Jose dropped a 3-2 decision in overtime to the host Flames. One statistic you can bank on is that the Sharks chances of making the playoffs, much less making a playoff run, will be a crap shoot if they continue to cough up loss after loss like the one on Tuesday.

San Jose was looking to win back-to-back games for the first time since February 2nd when they knocked off the Dallas Stars 5-2 at HP Pavilion. Once again, they got off to a fast start, scoring just 53 seconds into the game. Logan Couture converted the first of his two goals on the night, depositing a rebound from the slot after Brent Burns bounced a shot off Miikka Kiprusoff.

Penalties stifled any chance to build on their lead the remainder of the period. A Ryane Clowe hooking penalty was book-ended by a pair of inexcusable infractions for too many men.

Jason Demers tried closing out the period with a nice open-ice hit on Curtis Glencross, but the Flames winger took exception to the hit and retaliated by pasting Demers with a check from behind that sent the Sharks defenseman face-first into the boards. Glencross ended his quest to extend his 7-game goal scoring streak by earning a boarding major and an early trip to the showers for the hit.

The bulk of the penalty carried over to the 2nd period, but that's where things really went wrong for San Jose. The Sharks took a casual approach to the extended penalty, generating a mere 5 shots on goal during the man-advantage.

To make matters worse, Calgary bit back as soon as they killed off the 5-minute penalty. Rookie Sven Baertschi scored his 2nd goal of the season, poking home a rebound from the left side. Flames captain Jerome Iginla was parked on the top of the crease, which distracted Antti Niemi enough to give Bartschi the room he needed.

Mark Giordano was sent off at 16:21 of the period after he lifted the puck over the glass for the delay of game penalty. San Jose missed for the 4th time on the power play, then committed the ultimate sin by allowing the Flames to score right after the penalty expired. Giordano stepped out of the box, intercepting a pass, then hitting Iginla on the far side of the ice. Iginla pumped a shot past Niemi for his 30th goal of the season.

Cory Sarich was sent off for high sticking with 10 seconds left in the period, giving San Jose an abridged power play to start the 3rd. They would finally convert, when Couture bagged his 2nd of the game. The Sharks worked a nice passing sequence when Joe Thornton fed Patrick Marleau near the left post. Couture cut through the slot, receiving a feed from Marleau for the easy deposit.

Referees Chris Lee and Tom Kowal missed a blatant boarding by Matt Stajan late in regulation had the Sharks scratching their heads. Stajan crushed T.J. Galiardi in the right corner as the Sharks forward was trying to dig a puck out of the corner. The hit was worse than the one that ended Glencross' evening, but went uncalled. Calgary raced up the ice as Galiardi lay slumped over in the corner.

The Sharks controlled the overtime, generating three quality scoring chances, but Kiprusoff kept the puck out of his own net.

With time winding down, the Flames created an odd man rush after Boyle bounced a shot in the Calgary zone off Stajan's shin pad. Stajan and Blake Comeau raced up ice. Boyle flailed at Stajan from behind but was too late to stop Stajan from slipping a shot past Niemi after taking a feed from Comeau on the right wing.





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Scoring
1 2 3 O T
SJ 1 0 1 0 2
CGY 0 2 0 1 3
1st period - 1, SJ, Couture 29 (Burns, Thornton), 0:53.
2nd period - 2, CGY, Baertschi 2 (Iginla, Horak), 5:46. 3, CGY, Iginla 30 (Giordano), 18:27.
3rd period - 4, SJ, Couture 30 (Marleau, Thornton), 1:22, (pp).
Overtime - 5, CGY, Stajan 5 (Comeau), 4:20.
Penalties
1st period - Bench, SJ (too many men), 2:31; Clowe, SJ (hooking), 5:06; Stajan, CGY (holding), 12:32; Bench, SJ (too many men), 16:33; Clowe, SJ (fighting major), 19:31; Glencross, CGY (boarding major), 19:31; Glencross, CGY (game misconduct), 19:31; Desbiens, SJ (fighting major), 19:31.
2nd period - Giordano, CGY (delay of game - puck over glass), 16:21; Sarich, CGY (high sticking), 19:50.
3rd period - None.
Overtime - None.
Goaltending
Shots Saves
SJ - Niemi 22 19
CGY - Kiprusoff 31 29
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 OT T
SJ 10 8 9 4 31
CGY 8 9 2 3 22
Power Play Conversion
SJ 1 of 5
CGY 0 of 3
3 Stars of the Game
Jerome Iginla
Logan Couture
Mark Giordano
Attendence
19,289
Officials
Referees: Lee, Kowal. Linesmen: Lazarowich, Wheler.
Holiday Gifts at BustedTees

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