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Sharks weather the storm
Sharks outlast tornadoes and Stars
4/3/12 - By Mike Lee -

The Sharks continued to feast on the Dallas Stars winning for the fifth time in six tries this season, with a 5-2 win at the American Airlines Center in Texas on Tuesday night. San Jose dropped a 4-3 decision in the shootout back on March 8th, but was otherwise perfect in the season series with their division rival. San Jose received scoring from five different players, including trade deadline acquisitions Daniel Winnik and T.J. Galiardi.

Galiardi's goal was particularly important, because it came 32 seconds after Alex Goligoski had given the Stars a 2-1 lead. It was also Galiardi's 1st goal as a Shark. The winger had gone 11 games in teal without potting a goal. The tally erased all the momentum that Goligoski's score gave Dallas, taking the 18,584 in attendance out of the equation.

San Jose now also has a three point cushion on the 9th place Stars, who have two games left to try and overtake the Sharks for the final playoff spot in the Western Conference. San Jose would have to lose both of their remaining games against the Los Angeles Kins and the Stars need to beat Nashville and St Louis to close out the regular season.

The Sharks were motivated to move out of the 8th spot in order to avoid the Blue in the 1st round. St Louis has dominated the Sharks this season. The opening 12 minutes of Tuesday night's affair was a fast paced with so much on the line for both teams. Winnik opened the scoring with his 8th goal of the season at 12:09 of the 1st period, bouncing a shot off Stars netminder Kari Lehtonen from the left side after an Andrew Desjardins shot was deflected to the corner.

The Sharks look poised to carry their 1-0 lead into the 1st intermission but Sharks goaltender Antti Niemi surrendered a horrific goal to Brendan Morrow late. Morrow carried the puck from behind the Sharks net, and putting a backhand shot from outside the left post. Niemi wasn't square to the shot, which deflected off his right pad and into the net.

Colin White and Brent Burns took penalties a minute apart, giving the Stars a 5-on-3 power play. The Stars failed to convert on the 2-man advantage.

Goligoski converted his 9th of the season 11:10 into the 2nd period, firing a shot from the blueline that eluded Niemi. The Sharks netminder may have been distracted by Steve Ott, who hog-tied Burns in the crease. Both players went crashing to the ice as Jamie Benn moved the puck out to Goligoski in the high slot.

Galiardi worked his magic seconds later, cutting to the right post as Dominic Moore made a feed from the end boards. Galiardi collected Moore's pass and lifted a shot from a tight angle, slipping the puck over Lehtonen's left shoulder.

A Michael Ryder tripping penalty setup the Sharks to grab the lead once and for all. Logan Couture redirected a Martin Havlat feed as he sat parked in front of the Stars net. The goal was Couture's 31st of the season.

Mark Fistric cut Joe Thornton with a high stick 3:27 into the 3rd period, setting up the Sharks with a lengthy power play. Problem is, they didn't take advantage of the opportunity, allowing the Stars to kill the 4-minute infraction and build a little momentum back.

The Stars almost re-tied the game with 5:10 left in regulation when Benn took a long pass up ice and raced in on net on a breakaway chance. Niemi stood his ground and turned Benn's scoring chance aside with a pad save after the forward tried deeking to this right.

Thornton broke the Stars back with a goal on the ensuing possession. San Jose worked the puck to the right corner where Joe Pavelski collected it and slid a pass to the right dot, where Thornton received it and snapped a wrist-shot over Lehtonen's Left shoulder.

Dallas was forced to pull Lehtonen in a last ditch effort to tie the game, but that simply served to setup an empty net goal by Ryane Clowe to seal the Sharks victory.

Game Notes:

Two tornadoes touched down in the Dallas - Ft Worth area earlier in the day, bring the game into question. The twisters did significant damage, but authorities deemed the area around the American Airlines center safe.



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Scoring
1 2 3 T
SJ 1 2 2 5
DAL 1 1 0 2
1st period - 1, SJ, Winnik 8 (Desjardins, Burns), 12:09. 2, DAL, Morrow 11 (Ribeiro, Fistric), 17:47.
2nd period - 3, DAL, Goligoski 9 (Benn, Larsen), 11:10. 4, SJ, Galiardi 9 (Moore, Vlasic), 11:42. 5, SJ, Couture 31 (Havlat, Boyle), 17:24, (pp).
3rd period - 6, SJ, Thornton 17 (Pavelski, Marleau), 15:10. 7, SJ, Clowe 16 (Couture), 18:56, (en).
Penalties
1st period - White, SJ (interference), 18:38; Burns, SJ (hooking), 19:40.
2nd period - Nystrom, DAL (hooking), 2:10; Ryder, DAL (hooking), 16:57.
3rd period - Fistric, DAL (high sticking - double minor), 3:27; Ribeiro, DAL (10 min miconduct), 18:56.
Goaltending
Shots Saves
SJ - Niemi 31 29
DAL - Lehtonen 25 21
DAL - empty net 1 0
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 T
SJ 5 10 11 26
DAL 12 9 10 31
Power Play Conversion
SJ 1 of 4
DAL 0 of 2
3 Stars of the Game
Logan Couture
Jamie Benn
T.J. Galiardi
Attendence
18,584
Officials
Referees: Lee, Meier. Linesmen: Miller, Nansen.
Holiday Gifts at BustedTees

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