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Sharks fall short in road trip finale
Logan Couture injured in 3-2 loss
1/7/20 - By Mike Lee -

The Sharks wrapped up their 5-game road trip with a stop in St Louis to take on the defending Stanley Cup Champion Blues at the Enterprise Center. San Jose entered play still licking their wounds after their tough loss in Washington DC on Sunday. The Sharks fell behind on a pair of 2nd period goals, then fell short in a comeback bid, losing 3-2.

San Jose lost the game, and may have lost captain Logan Couture, who suffered a knee injury in the 2nd period. The Sharks will know more on Couture's prognosis after the team returns home on Wednesday.

The up and down road trip ended on a negative after San Jose made enough mistakes to stake the Blues to the three goals it would take to win this one. San Jose generated only 5 shots in the 1st period, but solid defense helped them hold square in the opening frame.

The Blues drew first blood 5:39 into the 2nd period when Tyle Bozak cut across the slot after picking up a drop pass from Alexander Steen before roofing a shot past Aaron Dell. The Blues simply flexed their muscle on the play, beating the Sharks to the puck. Bozak was a step above.

Ivan Barbashev made it a 2-0 lead less than two minutes later. The Blues forward took off on a breakaway chance but this shot was steered wide by Dell. The Sharks coughed the puck up in the left corner where Oskar Sundqvist fished it away from Logan Couture and sent a pass to Barbashev on the right post for a slam duck redirect.

The Blues were finally called for a minor penalty 1:39 into the 3rd period, and the sharks capitalized. Timo Meier pumped a shot from the top of the right circle, beating Jordan Binnington for his 15th goal of the season. Erik Karlsson earned the primary assist, with the secondary going to Barclay Goodrow.

St Louis answered 1:53 later when David Perron scooped up a loose puck in the high slot, then whipping a shot that Dell tried to glove, but was late. Perron's shot clipped Dell's glove, depositing for Perron's 18th tally of the season.

Jordan Kyrou appeared to give the Blues a 4-1 lead with 8 minutes left in regulation when his shot from the slot eluded Dell. Sharks head coach Bob Boughner challenged the play for offside, which turned out to favor the Sharks and nullifying the goal.

A cross checking call on Barclay Goodrow backed the Sharks into a corner late in the 3rd period. Down by 2 goals, the Sharks cut back into the Blues lead when Erik Karlsson scored a short-handed goal at 16:50.

Karlsson's goal setup the Sharks for their own comeback, but the Blues held on to snd the Sharks to their second consecutive loss.

Game Notes:

* Logan Couture was ridden into the end boards by defenseman Vince Dunn on what should have been called interference at the least early in the 2nd period. Not only was there no call, but Couture crumpled to the ice after hitting his left knee on the boards. The Sharks captain had to be helped off the ice, favoring his left knee. Couture did not return to the game.

* Erik Karlsson's short-handed goal was the second of his NHL career.

* The Sharks were perfect on special teams, killing all three Blues power play chances. They would score on their lone power play chance, and then again while short-handed.

* Logan Couture has missed 66 games over his 9 year career. He missed 30 games in 2015-16.

* Aaron Dell made 24 saves, but fell short. Jordan Binnington made 27 saves.



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Scoring
1 2 3 T
SJ 0 0 2 2
STL 0 2 1 3
1st period - None.
2nd period - 1, STL, Bozak 9 (Steen, Schenn), 5:39. 2, STL, Barbashev 6 (Sundqvist), 6:59.
3rd period - 3, SJ, Meier 15 (E. Karlsson, Goodrow), 2:!4, (pp). 4, STL, Perron 18 (O'Reilly), 4:07. 5, SJ, E. Karlsson 5 (unassisted), 16:50, (sh).
Penalties
1st period - Vlasic, SJ (holding), 12:21.
2nd period - Labanc, SJ (slashing), 14:34.
3rd period - Schenn, STL (hooking), 1:39. Goodrow, SJ (cross checking), 15:41.
Goaltending
Shots Saves
SJ - Dell 27 24
STL - Binnington 31 29
Shots On Goal
1 2 3 T
SJ 5 11 15 31
STL 10 9 8 27
Power Play Conversion
SJ 1 of 1
STL 0 of 3
3 Stars of the Game
Ivan Barbashev
Tyler Bozak
Vince Dunn
Attendance
Enterprise Center - 18,096
Officials
Referees: Sutherland, Schlenker. Linesmen: Brisebois, Suchanek.





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