Photo credit: @SanJoseSharks
By Mary Walsh
SAN JOSE — The San Jose Sharks ended their seven game losing streak Saturday, beating the Vegas Golden Knights 4-3 in overtime. It was a good preview of the playoffs, possibly even a playoff matchup if the standings remain as they are. Each team got credit for 40 hits. Between hits, a lot of goals were scored too. For San Jose, goals came from Tomas Hertl, Evander Kane, Marc-Edouard Vlasic, and Brent Burns. Las Vegas goals came from William Karlsson, Cody Eakin and Shea Theodore. Martin Jones made 23 saves in the win while Vegas goaltender Malcolm Subban made 30 saves in the loss.
Vegas scored first at 3:54. The Sharks had just thwarted a nice play by Vegas, turning what could have easily been a goal into a puck behind the net. Unfortunately, Vegas had control of that puck and Jonathan Marchessault made a pass from below the goal line to the slot, where William Karlsson was open with a clear view of Martin Jones. It was Karlsson’s 24th of the season. Assists went to Marchessault and Reilly Smith.
The rest of the period was littered with matching penalties. An interference penalty to Marcus Sorensen was matched by an embellishment penalty to Colin Miller. Joe Thornton’s high-sticking penalty was matched by a roughing penalty to Ryan Reaves. Reaves also got a misconduct on that one.
The Sharks tied the game just under a minute into the second period. Tomas Hertl caught a stray rebound from a Joonas Donskoi shot. Hertl then wove his way around a defender and poked the puck between skaters and shot it past the Malcolm Subban. It was Hertl’s 35th goal of the season. Assists went to Donskoi and Timo Meier.
Just before a fight between Barclay Goodrow and William Carrier (at 3:01), Brenden Dillon was called for cross-checking, so the crowd was presented with the odd sight of a power play coming out of a fight. It did not change the score but took a little explaining.
That power play probably did set the Knights up to score at 5:30, moments after it expired. Cody Eakin was right in front of the blue paint when Deryk Engelland’s shot came in and dropped dead off of Jones’s pads. Eakin was able to gather it up and put it in the net. Assists went to Engelland and Ryan Carpenter.
The Sharks tied it again at 7:22 of the third. Tomas Hertl burst into the Vegas zone trailing one defender and slipping around another on his way to the net. He didn’t get a shot off but drew all the attention his way as he went behind the net and sent the puck forward for one of several Sharks to take a shot. Two couldn’t catch it but Evander Kane was coming in as the trailer and he found the rebound for a quick shot into an empty net. Subban was stuck in traffic to the side of the net, unable to get back for the save.
Marc-Edouard Vlasic gave the Sharks their first lead of the night at 11:26 with a slap shot off an offensive zone faceoff. Logan Couture got the assist. It was Vlasic’s third of the season.
That lead only lasted for 38 seconds. Shea Theodore did almost exactly what Vlasic did, taking a shot off an offensive zone faceoff win by William Karlsson. It was Theodore’s 12th of the season.
The end of the third was spent mostly in penalties. First, matching roughing penalties were assigned to Timo Meier and William Carrier at 16:10. At 10:05, almost a minute after the four-on-four ended, Colin Miller was called for hooking.
That power play carried over into the extra period, right up to Brent Burns’s game winner 22 seconds into overtime. That shot came off of Couture’s pass along the blue line. A secondary assist went to Kevin Labanc.
The Sharks next play on Sunday at 5:00 PM PT against the visiting Calgary Flames.