BOSTON -- Boston-born and -bred Benn Ferriero enjoyed his homecoming game Saturday night.
"I grew up here my whole life," said Ferriero after the Sharks improved to 2-0 on their six-game Eastern road trip. "And I grew up a Bruins fan. I'm just happy to play against them and it was great to get the game-winner there at the end."
Ferriero, who played collegiately at Boston College, was called up from the Sharks' AHL team in Worcester, Mass., on Thursday and made his season debut Friday night in a 4-3 shootout win at New Jersey. His goal on Saturday was pure hard work, as he took a hit in the corner to pass the puck back to the point, then battled his way to the front of the goal, where Jim Vandermeer's shot from the left point deflected off Boston goaltender Tim Thomas after a tip.
"A lot of the goals come from around the crease area, from within five, 10 feet from the net. You've got to work there, get your stick down and when you get a chance bear down and bury your chances," said Ferriero.
Over the course of his three seasons as a pro, Ferriero has matured under Sharks coach Todd McLellan.
"Benn is really growing as a player," McLellan said. "He surprised us last year at training camp. He had a chance to stick around, then he needed some time in the minors. His training camp was good. Didn't quite make it, but in the time between now and then our team has faltered a little bit. He has got the opportunity and we always said there would be some internal competition and he's made good on it. We're happy for him."
Patrick Marleau added an empty-netter for San Jose.
For all but 29 seconds of the third period, Sharks goaltender Antti Niemi was impenetrable. Niemi made 37 saves on 39 shots to improve to 4-0-0 in his career against Boston. However, he couldn't hold onto a 2-0 lead early in the third period.
Chris Kelly blocked Niemi's clearing attempt along the end wall and the puck eluded several Sharks sticks, including that of a diving Brett Burns, before Milan Lucic banged it in at 2:43 of the third. On the same shift, Kelly broke up a pass in the neutral zone and sent Lucic and Tyler Seguin off on a 2-on-1, which Seguin finished with a wrist shot just underneath the crossbar at 3:12. The Bruins had the momentum in their favor until Ferriero's heroics stole it back for San Jose.
The Bruins outshot the Sharks, 39-30 -- the first time San Jose was on the losing side of the shot clock this season.
"I reflect back on the five games that we have played this season because the tables were turned. I thought there were a lot of opportunities in those five games for us to put pressure on the other team and we didn't find a way to win them," McLellan said. "Tonight we found a way when the other team forchecked very hard. That is the best forechecking team that we have played against. Back-to-back nights with a little bit of fatigue, I thought we handled ourselves fairly well."
Despite playing the night before in New Jersey, the Sharks still got off to the fast start they wanted when Boston center David Krejci turned the puck over just a little past the Bruins' blue line and Joe Pavelski skated to the high slot with it and beat Thomas (26 saves) with a high wrister to the glove side.
The Bruins, who fell to 3-5-0, have now allowed the first goal in six games (2-4-0).
"That's because we're not scoring," Bruins coach Claude Julien said about his team's slow starts. "I think, besides tonight, when you look at the other games here this week, we had two great scoring chances in the first minute that we didn't bury. We had good starts; it's just that we don't bury our chances, and then the other team comes back and scores a goal. I don't know that we're having bad starts, more than, again, going back to not capitalizing. So again, that's the biggest thing that's hurting us right now."
Logan Couture doubled the Sharks' lead 8:54 into the second period. After Ryan Clowe and Martin Havlat outworked Bruins defenseman Dennis Seidenberg on the forecheck, Havlat backhanded a pass to the front of the net and Couture went top shelf for a 2-0 lead. It was Couture's first goal of this season after he scored 32 as a rookie in 2010-11.