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Sharks bite back to even series

The San Jose Sharks rebounded from a Game 1 loss with a 2-0 win over the Calgary Flames at the HP Pavilion last night.

SHARKS?2 - FLAMES?0?

The San Jose Sharks rebounded from a Game 1 loss with a 2-0 win over the Calgary Flames at the HP Pavilion last night.

Trailing 1-0 after the first period after a goal by San Jose’s Joe Pavelski, Calgary took six straight minor penalties in the second period, during which the Sharks out shot the Flames 27-3.

Thanks to solid netminding by Miikka Kiprusoff and great work by the Calgary penalty killers, the Flames managed to kill off all but one of the infractions before Torrey Mitchell swatted a loose puck in the crease into the net with just nine seconds left in a slashing penalty to Jim Vandermeer.

“Another nine seconds and it would have looked a lot better,” Calgary defenceman Cory Sarich told CBC. “You can’t have that many consecutive penalties.”

Shark netminder Evgeni Nabokov made 21 saves to record the shutout. In the first period Nabokov made a nice glove save on a shot by Sarich before turning aside a quality scoring chance by Jarome Iginla, but his best save was a great glove grab on a close-in shot off the stick of former San Jose captain Owen Nolan late in the final frame.

“Nabby was great,” Pavelski said in a post-game interview on CBC. “He saved the game for us a few times. Kipper was just as good.”

Kiprusoff stopped 41 of 43 shots he faced to give him 78 saves in the two games played in San Jose.
The best-of-seven opening round series is now knotted at a game apiece with the next game set for Sunday night (8 p.m.) at the Pengrowth Saddledome.

Game 4 will also be played at the ‘Dome on Tuesday night (8 p.m.).

“It’s going to be fun,” Pavelski said. “We’re good on the road. I think we’re going to be up to the challenge.”

San Jose forward Ryan Clowe, who scored the only two goals during a 3-2 loss to the Flames the night before, said the Sharks focused on having a better start to the game which resulted in Pavelski’s game-winning goal just 4:56 into the first period.

“They outworked us (Wednesday) night,” Clowe said. “We definitely had more traffic (in front of the net) and that was key.”

 
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