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game recap

Sharks keep pace in Pacific race

Defeat Canucks to move within two points of second place in division

by Kevin Woodley / Correspondent

VANCOUVER -- The San Jose Sharks kept pace in the Pacific Division race with a 3-1 win against the Vancouver Canucks at Rogers Arena on Sunday.

Tomas Hertl scored two goals, and Martin Jones made 29 saves for San Jose (44-28-7), which won for the second time in its past 10 games.

The Sharks trail the Anaheim Ducks by four points for first place in the division after the Ducks defeated the Calgary Flames 4-3.


WATCH: All Sharks vs. Canucks highlights


San Jose, which trails the Edmonton Oilers by two points for second place and leads fourth-place Calgary by three points, has three games remaining. The Oilers have a game in hand on the Sharks, Oilers and Flames.

"We want to use the next three games to build for playoffs," Jones said.

The Sharks will play all three games at home, against the Canucks, Oilers and Flames.

"We have to win all three and hope for a little bit of help," coach Pete DeBoer said.

Already missing center Logan Couture for a fourth game with facial injuries, Sharks center Joe Thornton left the game with an apparent left-knee injury with 3:05 left in the first period. Thornton wasn't putting weight on his left leg after his knee awkwardly hit the back of Michael Chaput's right leg when he checked him from behind along the boards in the Vancouver zone.

DeBoer didn't have an update on Thornton after the game.

"It was a gutsy effort," DeBoer said. "Take two guys like that out of your lineup, I thought the rest of the guys responded and got a much-needed two points for us."

Sven Baertschi scored with 3:53 left in the third period to make it 2-1, and Ryan Miller made 22 saves for the Canucks (30-39-9), who have lost four straight and are 2-9-2 in the past 13 games.

"I think it shows up on the ice in frustration," Miller said of mounting losses. "It takes something positive to get our energy up. That's tough."

Video: SJS@VAN: Hertl finds twine again on rebound chance

Hertl ended a 16-game goal drought when he scored off a scramble from close range at 11:00 of the first period for a 1-0 San Jose lead. He scored his second goal of the game from the left faceoff dot 1:51 later to give the Sharks a 2-0 lead.

"I need to show my best game with these guys missing," said Hertl, who missed 32 games after Nov. 21 knee surgery. "I expect some goals. Sometimes you're trying so hard and everything's going wrong."

Patrick Marleau scored into an empty net to make it 3-1 with 2.6 seconds remaining.


Goal of the game

Hertl started the play on his first goal by stealing the puck from Drew Shore and setting up Jannik Hansen alone at the top of the crease. Hansen tried to pass back to Hertl, but the puck went to Mikkel Boedker, and the rebound off Boedker's backhand left Hertl with an empty net.

Video: SJS@VAN: Hertl buries rebound to open scoring in 1st


Save of the game

Canucks forward Jayson Megna cut left to right through the slot with speed on a 1-on-1 rush against defenseman Paul Martin, but Jones stayed with him and got his left arm on his high shot.

Video: SJS@VAN: Jones turns away Megna with a quick glove


Unsung performance of the game

Alexander Edler's slap shot trickled behind Jones with 5:12 left in the first period, but defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic beat Bo Horvat to the loose puck.


Highlight of the game

Playing his first game in Vancouver since being traded to San Jose on Feb. 28, Hansen stranded Miller with a fake slap shot on a breakaway 6:42 into the game but was hooked off the puck by defenseman Nikita Tryamkin before he could shoot. Miller and Hansen, who received an ovation after a video tribute before the ensuing faceoff, shared some laughs during a brief chat afterward. "Love scoring on him in practice and would have liked to have done it here too," said Hansen, who had an assist on Hertl's first goal. "He's very competitive, hates to get scored on, especially by me, but it's a friendship you make when you play with guys for so long."


They said it

"It's a great challenge for us. Hopefully he's only out short term here, but I think we're confident as a group. We're a team that's a sum of our parts, not about one or two guys. If anyone can handle it, we can." -- Sharks coach Pete DeBoer on possibly having to play without center Joe Thornton, who left with an apparent left-knee injury late in the first period


"Lately, we haven't been good enough at home. That's what happens when you don't score enough goals." -- Canucks forward Daniel Sedin after an 11th straight home loss since Feb. 18 (0-8-3)


Need to know

Thornton, 37, is fourth on the Sharks with 50 points (seven goals, 43 assists) this season. His 1,391 NHL points are tied with Brett Hull for 22nd on the League's all-time list. … San Jose ended a six-game road losing streak with its 11th straight win in Vancouver. … Megna, who has four goals and four assists in 54 games this season, signed a one-year, $675,000 contract Sunday.


What's next

Canucks: At the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday (10:30 p.m. ET; NBCS CA+, SNP, NHL.TV)

Sharks: Host the Vancouver Canucks on Tuesday (10:30 p.m. ET; NBCS CA+, SNP, NHL.TV)


Video: Hertl scores twice to lead Sharks to 3-1 win

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