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game recap

Blues hold on for win against Sharks

Jaden Schwartz scores twice, David Perron gets game-winner

by Louie Korac / NHL.com Correspondent

ST. LOUIS -- St. Louis Blues left wing Jaden Schwartz was having trouble scoring, much like his teammates early in the season.

But Schwartz is heating up, he's scoring often, and the Blues benefitted after Schwartz scored twice in a 3-2 victory against the San Jose Sharks at Scottrade Center on Thursday.

"It always feels nicer," said Schwartz, who has five goals in his past six games after starting the season with one in eight. "It's guys in front doing a good job, taking the goalie's eyes away; that gives you the opportunity to pick a corner. That's big obviously.

"When pucks are going in as a team, it's a little bit of weight off your shoulders. Not relaxed, but you get a better feel shooting the puck."

David Perron got the game-winner for the Blues (9-6-3), who improved to 7-1-2 at home and 5-0-2 in their past seven at Scottrade Center.

"They pushed hard the whole first period, then we pushed back hard the second half of the game," Blues coach Ken Hitchcock said. "We really pushed back hard in the second half, which was good."

 

Watch: All Sharks vs. Blues highlights

 

Jake Allen, who is 5-0-2 at home, made 29 saves for St. Louis, which lost to San Jose in six games in the Western Conference Final last season.

"It's a good measuring stick for us more than anything I think," Schwartz said. "They're a team that's always at the top of the standings. ... A good team over there. They've been together for a while. It was a good test for us."

The Sharks (9-8-0), playing the fifth of a season-long six-game road trip, got goals from Logan Couture and Kevin Labanc, his first in the NHL. Martin Jones made 22 saves.

"The difference in the game is the power-play goal," Sharks coach Pete DeBoer said. "They got one and we didn't.

"I thought we did some good things. I didn't think we gave up a lot defensively. We've got to find a way to cash in when we get the chance."

San Jose took a 1-0 lead on Couture's first even-strength goal of the season at 6:16 of the first period.

Video: SJS@STL: Couture's wrist shot beats Allen five-hole

The Blues tied it 1-1 on Schwartz's first of the game at 10:38.

Schwartz scored his second of the game at 8:45 of the second period to give the Blues a 2-1 lead.

Labanc tied the game 2-2 after turning in the slot and shooting through Blues defenseman Jay Bouwmeester and Allen's legs 19 seconds later.

Perron's power-play goal ended San Jose's streak of 26 straight penalties killed and put the Blues ahead 3-2 on a snap shot from inside the top of the left circle at 15:56 of the second.

The Blues, who were 6-for-6 on the penalty kill, are 42-for-44 at home this season.

 

Goal of the game

Perron's goal may have caught Jones by surprise with how quickly he released the shot, but Blues center Paul Stastny did a nice job of finding Perron and giving him a lane to shoot for the eventual game-winner.

Video: SJS@STL: Perron's wrister beats Jones for PPG

 

Save of the game

Sharks left wing Matt Nieto had a chance to score his first of the season but Allen would have none of it. Allen got the paddle of his stick on Nieto's rebound with 15:21 remaining in the first to keep it 0-0.

 

Highlight of the game

The Sharks were coming at the Blues in waves, but Schwartz's first goal alleviated some of the pressure and the Blues settled in. Defenseman Alex Pietrangelo pinched in along the boards and forced a Sharks turnover.

Video: SJS@STL: Schwartz wrists the puck in from the slot

 

Unsung moment of the game

Blues fourth-line right wing Ryan Reaves and his linemates put together a tremendous shift getting sustained pressure in the San Jose zone right before Schwartz's second goal of the game. They wore the Sharks skaters out with heavy pressure.

 

They said it

"All three goals were almost similar that way, so I shot it." -- Blues left wing David Perron on shooting the puck quick for his goal

 

"I was just kind of battling in front of the net trying to get position for a tip, but [Sharks center Joe Thornton] tipped it to me and I just kind of turned around and shot it." -- Sharks right wing Kevin Lebanc on his first NHL goal

 

Need to know

Blues forward Alexander Steen was scratched after sustaining an undisclosed injury Tuesday in a 4-1 win against the Buffalo Sabres despite taking part in the optional morning skate. Hitchcock said Steen is day to day and is hopeful to have him practice Friday. ... The Blues activated defenseman Robert Bortuzzo from injured-reserve before the game and he returned to the lineup after missing nine games with a lower-body injury. ... With an assist, Thornton has 54 points in 48 games against the Blues. Sharks forward Tomas Hertl left the game with 4:39 left in the second period with an undisclosed injury and did not return.

 

What's next

Sharks: At the Arizona Coyotes on Saturday (8 p.m. ET; FS-A, CSN-CA, NHL.TV)

Blues: Home against the Nashville Predators on Saturday (8 p.m. ET; FS-MW, FS-TN, NHL.TV)

Video: Schwartz scores twice to power Blues to 3-2 win

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