ALSO ON SLAM!
Thursday, March 23, 2000
SHARKS 4, Canucks 3
Friesen scores to get Sharks past Canucks
SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) -- The San Jose Sharks, down a goal and with their leading scorer in the dressing room, came up with one of their biggest wins of the season.
Vincent Damphousse and Jeff Friesen scored in the third period as the Sharks, who blew an early two-goal lead, beat the Vancouver Canucks 4-3 on Wednesday night to take over sole possession of eighth place in the Western Conference.
Trailing 3-2 and with Owen Nolan missing the entire third period because of a mild concussion, the Sharks tied the game midway through the period on Damphousse's goal. Friesen scored the deciding goal with 4:10 remaining in the game.
"When we saw (Nolan) wasn't there, I think all of us wanted to go out there and come together as a team," Friesen said. "He's been carrying us all year and when he's not able to come out, it's a big blow for us. We had to step up and show some character, which we did. It was obviously a huge win for us."
The victory moved the Sharks out of an eighth-place tie with Anaheim, which lost 2-1 at Edmonton earlier in the night. Vancouver remained in 10th place with 74 points, four behind the Sharks.
"I told them after the second period that we didn't deserve to be down in the game, that's for sure," Sharks coach Darryl Sutter said. "I think we clearly outplayed them and outchanced them (in the third period)."
Niklas Sundstrom and Patrick Marleau scored in the first period for the Sharks, who broke a two-game losing streak.
Murray Baron, Trent Klatt and Matt Cooke scored for the Canucks, who would have moved into a three-way tie for eighth with San Jose and Anaheim if they had won. The loss broke a three-game winning streak for Vancouver.
"It's really frustrating," Vancouver's Markus Naslund said. "We had to battle back from 2-0, and we got it back and we gave it away totally in the third."
Sundstrom opened the scoring on a power play midway through the first period when he completed a give-and-go play with Mike Ricci. It was the 32nd power-play goal allowed by the Canucks this season, one of the worst marks in the league.
The Sharks made it 2-0 in the final minute of the first period when Marleau split two defencemen and slapped the puck over goalie Felix Potvin's left shoulder from an extremely difficult angle to the side of the net.
But Vancouver came out with much greater intensity in the second period, and got its first goal less than a minute into the period when Baron scored his second goal of the season.
The Canucks tied the game midway through the period on a power-play goal by Klatt, who tipped in Adrian Aucoin's shot. And Potvin preserved the tie seconds later when he stopped Nolan on a breakaway while the Sharks were short-handed.
Vancouver took a 3-2 lead with 61/2 minutes left in the second period on Cooke's short-handed goal. Peter Schaefer blocked a shot at the other end of the ice, skated into the Sharks' zone and fired a shot on net. The rebound landed in front of the net, and Cooke got to it and flipped a backhander past Shields.