ST. LOUIS (AP) — Tomas Hertl scored the only goal in a four-round shootout to give the San Jose Sharks a 2-1 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday night.
Marcus Sorensen scored the tying goal late in the second period and Martin Jones made 22 saves for the Sharks, who snapped a six-game losing streak to St. Louis that started in the 2019 playoffs.
Jones denied all four Blues shooters in the tiebreaker. Both of San Jose’s wins this season have come via shootout.
”We need points any way we can get them right now, so regulation, overtime, shootout, whatever it takes,” forward Logan Couture said.
Brayden Schenn scored in his second consecutive game for St. Louis. Jordan Binnington made 37 saves but couldn’t stop Hertl in the shootout.
”I thought he was going to go one-hander, but obviously he didn’t,” Binnington said.
Kevin Labanc appeared to get the game-winner for San Jose with 11 seconds left in overtime, but the officials quickly waved it off for goaltender interference on Ryan Donato. After a replay review, the call was upheld.
”When you’re in front of the net it’s sometimes hard to tell exactly how deep you are and obviously, he had ‘Bancer and your instant reaction is just to be in front of net,” Donato said. ”I didn’t realize how far, how deep I actually was and, I mean, naturally, you’re not really supposed to skate away from the front of the net because that’s where goals are scored. So, for me it’s just a hockey play and it’s an unfortunate bounce.”
The last time the Sharks and Blues went to overtime was Game 4 of the 2019 Western Conference finals when San Jose won on a disputed hand pass. St. Louis went on to win the series and the Stanley Cup.
John Leonard almost gave the Sharks the lead in this one, ringing a drive off the post early in the second period.
Instead, Schenn put the Blues on top at 4:27 of the second off Jordan Kyrou’s feed. It was the first time in four games that St. Louis scored first.
”We got a lot of guys that aren’t skating and they’re not competing hard enough,” Blues coach Craig Berube said.
Vince Dunn came close to building on St. Louis’ lead, but he hit the post late in the second.
The Sharks took advantage, tying the game with 2:03 left in the second as Sorensen made a diving poke off Matt Nieto’s shot to even the game 1-all.
”I believe the third and fourth lines created some of our best O-zone shifts tonight when we needed it just at the right time,” Sharks coach Bob Boughner said. ”They jumped over the boards and they played a little bit of a blue color-style game which was perfect for us.”
The teams combined to go 0 for 12 on the power play.
St. Louis is scoreless on its first 14 chances with the man advantage this season, while San Jose entered the game second in the NHL, scoring on 45% of its power-play opportunities.
”The (penalty) kill was good tonight and our power play wasn’t, so we’re going to try and have both going same time,” Schenn said.
Sharks forward Dylan Gambrell was in the lineup for the first time this season. He centered the third line between Leonard and Stefan Noesen.
Blues defenseman Niko Mikkola saw his first action of the season, filling in for Marco Scandella. Mikkola was paired with Carl Gunnarsson, who made his season debut on Monday for Robert Bortuzzo, who was placed on injured reserve with an upper-body injury.
Blues forward Sammy Blais was back in the starting lineup after serving a two-game suspension for a hit on Colorado’s Devon Toews in the season opener. Blais took Kyle Clifford’s spot on the fourth line with Ivan Barbashev and Oskar Sundqvist.
Sharks: Continue their season-opening, eight-game road trip by starting a two-game set at Minnesota on Friday night.
Blues: Continue their four-game homestand by hosting the Los Angeles Kings in the first of a two-game set Saturday night.
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