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Sharks avoid Stars season sweep
Timo Meier scores another pair to pace SJ
12/13/18 - By Mike Lee -

Timo Meier continued to wield a hot hand, turning in another 2-goal game to propel the Sharks to a 3-2 win over the visiting Dallas Stars on Thursday night. San Jose avoided dropping a third consecutive game to the Stars and the season sweep with the win. Meier has been the Sharks primary goal scorer as of late. His first tally helped San Jose tie the Stars, followed by another tally which would give the Sharks the lead for good.

The win marked the fourth straight at home for San Jose, who hits the road again for another short two-game trip. The Sharks have found success on home ice, but games away from SAP Center have been unkind for San Jose. They'll need to improve on the 4-4-2 road record that has kept them from the top of the Western Conference.

Another slow start caught up to the Sharks.

The pre-game warm ups were more entertaining than the 1st period, which resulted in zero goals on 8 shots between the two teams. San Jose generated 5 shots directed at Stars netminder Anton Khudobin, to three shots thrown at Martin Jones.

Dallas finally cracked the score sheet with a Radek Faksa goal 3:35 into the 2nd period. The Stars centerman put back a rebound after Julius Honka bounced a shot off the right post. The Sharks defense was scrambling aimlessly out in front of the net, but none of the four skaters in the vicinity of the goal mouth could do anything to stop Faksa.

Timo Meier tied the game with 3:40 remaining in the period, booming a shot from the blueline that evaded Khudobin. Logan Couture was creating a diversion in front of the net when Meier uncorked his long range chance that converted for his 17th of the season.

Meier gave the Sharks the 2-1 lead 2:50 into the 3rd period on a 3-on-1 break that ended with Meier one-timing a Logan Couture feed past Khudobin from the bottom of the right circle. The shot knuckled off Meier's stick, floating over Khudobin's left shoulder. Meier also scored two goals in the Sharks win over New Jersey on Monday night.

The Sharks were the beneficiaries of a fortuitous rebound, when Radim Simek tried sweeping a puck on net from the left side. The shot hit former Sharks defenseman Roman Polak, deflecting to the right side, where Joe Thornton was there to deposit the timely deflection. Centerman Tyler Pitlick was positioned between Thornton and the Stars goal, but he turned his head to pick up the puck on the far side. Unaware that the puck had landed on Thornton's stick, Pitlick allowed the follow up shot to split his skates en route to the net.

Dallas didn't quit. Rookie defenseman Miro Heiskanen sent a long shot from the high slot on net that Jones failed to pick up, allowing the Stars to cut into the Sharks lead. That left the Sharks with 7:36 to make their slim lead stick.

Dallas was forced to pull Khudobin with 1:30 left in regulation. The Stars couldn't mount any form of attack after the Sharks cleared the puck three times, including two long time killers that fell short of the opposing goal line for icing.

Jones finished the evening with 20 saves to earn his 13th win of the season. The win also gave the Sharks a 3-game winning streak for only the second time this season. San Jose has yet to win four in a row this season. They'll get a chance to do just that on Sunday when they travel to Chicago to take on the Blackhawks.

Game Notes:

* Joe Thornton's goal was the 402nd of his NHL career.

* Evander Kane and Brent Burns led the Sharks with 4 shots on goal each. Stars defenseman Miro Heiskanen also recorded 4 shots to lead Dallas.

* Logan Couture had a big night, recording 2 assists, adding 3 shots on goal, and a blocked shot. He was also 8 of 11 from the faceoff circle for a 73% win rate.

* Former Stars defenseman Brendan Dillon turned up the physicality against his old team. Dillon led San Jose with 5 hits, many of which were of the teeth rattling variety.

* Timo Meier's offensive showing was the 4th multi-goal performance of the season.





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Scoring
1 2 3 T
DAL 0 1 1 2
SJ 0 1 2 3
1st period - None.
2nd period - 1, DAL, Faksa 5 (Honka, Nikushkin), 3:35. 2, SJ, Meier 17 (Burns, Couture), 16:20.
3rd period - 3, SJ, Meier 18 (Couture, E. Karlsson), 2:50. 4, SJ, Thornton 5 (Simek, Sorensen), 7:56. 5, DAL, Heiskanen 7 (Benn, Seguin), 12:24.
Penalties
1st period - None.
2nd period - Shore, DAL (delay of game), 11:43.
3rd period - None.
Goaltending
Shots Saves
DAL - Khudobin 24 21
SJ - Jones 22 20
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 T
DAL 3 12 7 22
SJ 5 10 9 24
Power Play Conversion
DAL 0 of 0
SJ 0 of 1
3 Stars of the Game
Timo Meier
Erik Karlsson
Logan Couture
Attendance
SAP Center - 17,185
Officials
Referees: Brenk, Pollock. Linesmen: Mills, Gawryletz.
Holiday Gifts at BustedTees

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