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Sharks defeat Devils for fifth straight win, gain in Pacific

Get three goals from fourth line, three assists from Burns to pad lead for second place

by Eric Gilmore / NHL.com Correspondent

SAN JOSE -- The San Jose Sharks strengthened their grip on second place in the Pacific Division with their season-high fifth straight win, 6-2 against the New Jersey Devils at SAP Center on Tuesday.

The Sharks (41-23-9) lead the Los Angeles Kings by four points and the Anaheim Ducks by five. They trail the Vegas Golden Knights by eight points for first place.

 

[WATCH: All Devils vs. Sharks highlights]

 

"It's a critical time," San Jose coach Peter DeBoer said. "I think we talked going into the month that we wanted to put our foot on the gas and make sure that we're in a [Stanley Cup] Playoff spot. I think the guys have responded to that.

"You always find out what your group is made of when they're pushed up against the wall. We were in a group a couple weeks ago of five or six teams that were all pretty much in the same spot, and we found a way to separate ourselves."

Logan Couture scored his 30th goal, and Martin Jones made 26 saves for the Sharks. San Jose got a goal from all three forwards on the fourth line, Eric Fehr, Barclay Goodrow and Jannik Hansen. Joe Pavelski and Mikkel Boedker also scored, and Brent Burns had three assists.

"It's probably been a while since that happened," Fehr said of the fourth line's three goals. "It's nice to contribute."

Video: NJD@SJS: Fehr roofs tough-angle shot to open scoring

Taylor Hall and Blake Coleman scored for the Devils, who were coming off a 4-2 loss at the Anaheim Ducks on Sunday following a three-game winning streak.

New Jersey (37-28-8) leads the Florida Panthers by one point for the second wild card into the playoffs from the Eastern Conference.

"We've got to take the lessons [from] the two beatings we took and we have to learn quick because you continue to play teams that are in the playoff race, who are in the hunt," Devils coach John Hynes said. "These last two teams we played on this road trip were teams that are really fighting for something, and there was a different level of intensity and execution out of those teams, and we've got to get to that level."

Cory Schneider allowed four goals on 14 shots before being relieved by Keith Kinkaid (nine saves) midway through the second period. Schneider is 0-9-2 his past 11 starts and hasn't won since Dec. 27 against the Detroit Red Wings.

"To me, it's not on the goaltender, or either goaltender that was in," Hynes said. "Our team has to be better in lots of aspects."

Fehr gave the Sharks a 1-0 lead at 5:32 of the first period with a wrist shot from below the right face-off circle.

Video: NJD@SJS: Pavelski tips in Labanc's shot for PPG

The Devils tied it 1-1 at 11:19 when Hall beat Jones on a breakaway.

San Jose took a 2-1 lead when Pavelski deflected Kevin Labanc's shot from close range on the power play at 12:25.

Hansen made it 3-1 at 15:14 when he scored on a breakaway for his first goal of the season.

"It's obviously nice," Hansen said. "It's been a long time coming. A little frustrated, obviously. We've been playing some good hockey lately, winning a lot of hockey games, and we're giving ourselves a good vantage point right now."

Goodrow kept the puck on a 2-on-1 and scored at 10:38 of the second period to increase the Sharks lead to 4-1 and chase Schneider.

Couture made it 5-1 at 11:18 with a wrist shot from the left circle on an odd-man rush, and Boedker scored a power-play goal to make it 6-1 at 18:20.

Coleman scored with 1:36 left in the third period to make it 6-2.

Video: NJD@SJS: Boedker picks the corner for power-play goal

 

Goal of the game

Hansen's goal at 15:14 of the first period.

Video: NJD@SJS: Hansen scores first of year on partial break

 

Save of the game

Jones stopping Damon Severson at 15:06 of the first period.

Video: NJD@SJS: Jones denies Severson from the doorstep

 

Highlight of the game

Couture's goal at 11:18 of the second period.

Video: NJD@SJS: Couture wires wrister top shelf 30th goal

 

They said it

"They played well, they played structured, they forced us into some turnovers, but that's what this time of year's about, sticking with it. We knew going into [a 3-0 win against the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday] and Anaheim and here, there wasn't going to be much free ice. That's the way they play. They're very structured and very tight, and they wear you out. It's almost like who's going to blink first and unfortunately the other night and tonight we did." -- Devils captain Andy Greene

 

"I thought our fourth line tonight was great. They scored two of our first three goals. They've done a real good job on the penalty kill, giving us the ability to roll four lines and not have to worry. It's a nice feeling as a coach to have a line like that." -- Sharks coach Peter DeBoer

 

Need to know

Sharks defenseman Brenden Dillon had two assists to extend his point streak to five games (two goals, four assists). ... Devils forward Drew Stafford had two assists for his first multipoint game since he scored two goals Oct. 17 against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

 

What's next

Devils: At the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday (7 p.m. ET; NHLN, TVAS, ATTSN-PT, MSG+, NHL.TV)

Sharks: Host the Vegas Golden Knights on Thursday (10 p.m. ET; NBCSN, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Six different Sharks score in rout of Devils

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