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Sharks rally from early deficit to outscore Bruins

by Eric Gilmore

SAN JOSE -- It took the Boston Bruins 29 second to take the lead against the San Jose Sharks on Thursday. When the Bruins increased their margin to two goals just over two minutes later, San Jose Sharks coach Todd McLellan knew his prediction of a low-scoring, defensive battle was off-base.

He just didn't know how far off he was.

The Sharks roared back to defeat Boston 7-4 in a wild goal-fest at SAP Center. Tommy Wingels, Tyler Kennedy and Joe Pavelski each scored two goals for the Sharks.

The Sharks (13-10-4) outshot the Bruins 44-24 and had their biggest offensive night of the season. The Bruins (14-12-1) scored more than two goals for the second time in their past 11 games but couldn't hold their early two-goal lead.

"Sometimes that happens," McLellan said. "When you expect one thing it can completely go awry. At least we came out on the positive side."

Tomas Hertl had the other goal for the Sharks, who extended their winning streak to three games, matching their season high. San Jose also snapped a three-game losing streak to Boston.

"We kind of talked about it being a low-scoring game," Wingels said. "They haven't given up many goals. You anticipate it probably being a bit of a different game, but it shows that we can score a bunch of goals. We feel good about our offense right now."

Reilly Smith scored twice and Gregory Campbell and Torey Krug also had goals for the Bruins, who lost all three games on their swing through California this week. They conclude a four-game trip with a game against the Arizona Coyotes on Saturday.

"We scored some goals but the rest of our game wasn't very good," Bruins coach Claude Julien said. "After we took that 2-0 lead we kind of got loose and sloppy and that gave them a chance to get back in the game.

"We had a lot of poor performances out there, and you're not winning hockey games that way. They didn't get any lucky goals. They earned each one of them. We were just poor defensively, poor in a lot of areas."

San Jose and Boston entered the third period tied 4-4, but the Sharks quickly took control.

The Sharks moved ahead to stay at 3:02 on Kennedy's second goal of the game. He redirected Matt Irwin's blast from above the left circle past Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask.

Pavelski scored his team-high 12th at 11:13, a 4-on-4 goal that extended San Jose's lead to 6-4. Pavelski took a pass from Brent Burns after a faceoff, headed down the left boards, cut in hard toward Rask and banked a shot off Boston's Milan Lucic and into the net.

Hertl capped the scoring at 15:44 with his sixth of the season. Pavelski hammered a shot wide left of the goal that bounced off the end boards to Hertl, who quickly put the puck inside the left post from close range.

"Third period we heard the 'Let's go Sharks,' and that's probably the first time we've heard it all year," Pavelski said. "That's on us as players that we haven't created that kind of atmosphere, but we put up 45-50 shots there and we get to a good goalie."

The Bruins had scored 15 goals in their past 10 games and were coming off a 2-0 loss to the Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday, but they led 2-0 just 2:35 after the puck dropped.

Smith got behind Sharks defenseman Justin Braun, just to the left of the crease, and Patrice Bergeron fed him a cross-ice pass while falling down. With Bergeron drawing two defenders and goaltender Antti Niemi's attention, Smith hammered the puck into a wide-open net.

The Bruins quickly made it 2-0 when Campbell took a slick pass from Daniel Paille and scored his third goal of the season. Braun lost control of the puck along the boards in the neutral zone, and Boston made him pay for the mistake. Paille shot down the left boards, cut toward the middle, spun counterclockwise and sent a pass back to a wide-open Campbell, who ripped a shot inside the left post from close range.

"It was good getting a lead, and we were happy about that," Bergeron said. "But it seemed like halfway through that first period everything started going in a negative way. It was a poor effort after that first 10 minutes, an upsetting effort."

After the nightmare start, a relieved Braun was able to enjoy a victory.

"Guys bailed me out, and I think I might have to pick up dinner here for a few of them," Braun said. "You get those quick two early, and we've got to put the foot on the gas a little more offensively. We did that. The power play came through. Scoring from all over the lineup is good to see."

San Jose outscored the Bruins 4-2 in the second period and outshot them 24-7, firing at least 20 shots in a period for the second time this season.

San Jose scored three times in the first 7:30 of the period to take a 3-2 lead.

Wingels scored 27 seconds in when he set up in the slot and redirected defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic's snap shot between Rask's pads.

The Sharks tied it at 3:00. James Sheppard's sharp-angled shot from the right circle hit Kennedy's skate and ricocheted over Rask's left shoulder and inside the right post. Kennedy, who came off the injured list Thursday, scored his second goal of the season without getting his stick on the puck.

"I'll take them any way I can get them right now, that's for sure," Kennedy said. "That's what happens when you put pucks on net. [Sheppard] made a great play and I just tried to drive the net."

Wingels scored a power-play goal from the slot at 7:30 with Campbell serving a high-sticking penalty when he redirected Irwin's shot through teammate Matt Nieto's legs and past Rask, making it 3-2.

"Everyone wants to be around the net, but we softened up and were in smart areas, a little higher up or off to the side, and we were able to get some goals from it," Wingels said. "A few adjustments here and there, but kind of the same style of getting pucks to the net and getting second chances."

The Bruins answered 43 seconds later when Smith scored his second of the game. Carl Soderberg sent a pass ahead to Smith on a rush down the right side. Smith cut inside past Sharks defenseman Brenden Dillon and beat Antti Niemi with a shot from the slot.

Boston regained the lead at 13:33 on Krug's fourth goal of the season, a long blast through traffic from the point. But the Sharks pulled even again on Pavelski's power-play goal at 14:21. Pavelski zipped a pass to Patrick Marleau in the left circle, headed straight to the net and got the puck back in front of the crease. Pavelski poked the puck past Rask.

"It took us a little bit to get going," Pavelski said. "They get two, and that's kind of the number you can't get away from. Three gets to be pretty distant. Tommy and that line gets us going again. It kind of went rolling from there. We have a big second. We knew we were right there. We were doing some good stuff."

San Jose's Logan Couture, who took a blow to the head Tuesday against the Philadelphia Flyers, was cleared by doctors to play and was in the lineup, centering the second line with Wingels and Marleau. He played 12:32 and had two shots and three blocked shots.

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