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Gibson makes 23 saves, Ducks blank Sharks

by Abbey Mastracco

ANAHEIM -- John Gibson made 23 saves for his second shutout this week and Mike Santorelli scored 2:49 into the third period to give the Anaheim Ducks a 1-0 win against the San Jose Sharks on Friday at Honda Center.

Santorelli beat Sharks goalie Martin Jones after a behind-the-net pass from Nate Thompson. The fourth line of Santorelli, Thompson and Chris Stewart had been active on the forecheck throughout the game and were finally able to capitalize.

It was the fourth goal of the season for Santorelli and the first point for Thompson, who was playing his second game of the season after offseason shoulder surgery.

"The three of us got in on the forecheck and took a couple shots," Santorelli said. "[Stewart] and [Thompson] were down low and it was a good play. [Thompson] made a good pass to me and it went in."

Gibson, making his fifth consecutive start, also shut out the Vancouver Canucks on Monday and now has four NHL shutouts.

"[Gibson] played great, but at the same time, we did the fundamental things really well," Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said. "Unfortunately for us, we could've score more goals, but we're sort of snake-bit this year in goal-scoring."

The Pacific Division rivals have combined for four goals in their three games, each of which ended in a shutout.

Jones made 25 saves for the Sharks (14-11-0), whose streak of seven consecutive road wins ended.

"Both goalies were great, special teams were even. It just came down to who's probably going to get that first goal is probably going to win," Sharks coach Peter DeBoer said. "We had our opportunities early in the game, I thought they were a little better in the third, but it was a tightly played game."

Each team killed off three minors in the scoreless first period and struggled to find any flow at 5-on-5. San Jose's streak of consecutive games with a power play goal ended at four; the Sharks went 0-for-4 with man-advantage.

"It would have been nice to get one on the power play," Sharks center Joe Thornton said. "Really, it was a good road game. We'd like to obviously get some points out of this. We played, I thought, well enough to win, but unfortunately, we just didn't get any points out of it."

Gibson had to be sharp in the second period, when the Sharks outshot the Ducks 11-6. But he faced only one shot in the third period before stopping Brenden Dillon's screened slap shot from the left point with seven seconds remaining.

Gibson's calm in net kept the defense in front of him equally as calm. The sample size is small -- Gibson has played all of 31 NHL games -- but his teammates have been impressed with his unflappable demeanor.

"He was huge for us tonight," Thompson said. "I had the pleasure of playing with him [for the United States] in the World Championships and you could see it then. It was like he didn't have a heartbeat, but in a good way. You can see it in the way he plays."

Gibson is 3-2-1 with a 1.55 goals-against average and .942 save percentage since being recalled from San Diego of the American Hockey League on Nov. 24, when starter Frederik Andersen was sidelined with an illness. Boudreau has made no indication as to when Andersen will be ready to play again, but he knows that Gibson is in no hurry to go back to San Diego.

"Probably not," Boudreau said. "It's a beautiful city, but …"

San Jose returns home to play the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday. The Ducks (10-12-5) will host the Pittsburgh Penguins on Sunday.

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