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Oilers sink Sharks, can clinch at home

by Staff Writer / Edmonton Oilers
For the second straight game, the Oilers exploded in the third period. This time, they scored four goals en route to the victory. San Jose did manage to scramble back from a 3-1 deficit to tie the game 3-3 but Edmonton exploded with three unanswered markers after that.

Although Edmonton started the third period down a man with Raffi Torres in the box, Ryan Smyth got the puck deep before feeding Horcoff in the slot. Horcoff ripped it from the slot and it beat Toskala to give Edmonton a two-goal edge.

San Jose would get the goal back before the penalty expired, however. Christian Ehrhoff teed up a shot from the left point that beat Roloson top corner.

Two minutes later, the Oilers found themselves in trouble after an icing call left five tired skaters out on the ice. San Jose took advantage and after a pair of blocked shots, Cheechoo found a lane where he wired the puck past Roloson from the right hash marks to tie the game at 3-3.

Just when it looked like San Jose was stealing away all the momentum, Horcoff and Pisani created a two-on-one and capitalized. Horcoff found Pisani on a cross-ice pass and he made no mistake, lifting it past Toskala to put Edmonton back in front by a goal.

With 6:20 to play in the third, Ales Hemsky found Jarret Stoll at the left circle and, doing everything he did Friday except breaking his stick, Stoll scored on a one-timer to put Edmonton in front 5-3.

A Sharks five-on-three power play late in the game resulted in Ryan Smyth's second of the game as Edmonton increased its lead to 6-3, putting the game away.

Edmonton took a penalty early in the game when Michael Peca was sent off for goaltender interference. On the ensuing power play, Joe Thornton almost opened the scoring but couldn't get a handle on a bouncing puck in front.

Six minutes into the game, Jarret Stoll had a partial break but his shot went just wide of the right post on Edmonton's best scoring chance early.

Coming back the other way, Milan Michalek couldn't get a rolling puck to sit down in time for his scoring chance to the right of Dwayne Roloson.

Jonathan Cheechoo was also denied several minutes later when Roloson picked the puck right out of the air after Cheechoo tipped a Scott Hannan point shot.

On the next shift, Edmonton struck with their first of the game on their first shot of the night. Jaroslav Spacek's point shot was tipped in front by Fernando Pisani past Toskala to make it a 1-0 game.

Midway through the period, Matt Greene took a roughing penalty in a scrum but the Oilers were able to kill off the Sharks' second power play.

Shots on goal 13 minutes into the game were 6-2 for San Jose.

Edmonton's penalty killers continued to come up big, killing off Peca's second penalty of the night and the team's third late in the first.

Shots after one period were 9-4 in favour of San Jose.

The Sharks came flying out of the gate in the second period looking for the equalizer. Their hard work and cycling down low drew a holding penalty on Shawn Horcoff.

Edmonton was able to kill off the penalty without any real Sharks scoring chances, making San Jose 0-for-4 through the game's first 25 minutes.

A couple minutes later, the Sharks won a draw straight to Scott Thornton who fired it from the top of the left circle past Roloson to tie the game at 1-1.

With Mark Smith in the box and Edmonton on their second power play of the night, Ryan Smyth scored to put the Oilers back in front 2-1. Smyth broke his stick as the Oilers were cycling the puck but he was able to go to the bench and get a new stick. When he returned to the play, he tipped a Pronger point shot and then picked up his own rebound and jammed it past Toskala.

Edmonton's parade to the penalty box continued as the game crossed the midway point. Matt Greene and Steve Staios took consecutive penalties. San Jose put on a ton of pressure with Staios in the box but couldn't score or even get the puck through Edmonton's shot-blocking brigade. Jason Smith in particular was outstanding turning away pucks from the slot.

San Jose was outshooting Edmonton 17-7 through two periods but the Oilers went to the intermission with the one-goal lead.

NOTES: Milan Michalek returned to the lineup tonight for Ssn Jose after missing Game 3 and 4. Alyn McCauley, who missed Game 1, 2 and 4, also returned to the lineup for the Sharks. Grant Stevenson and Ryane Clowe were healthy scratches... Edmonton went with the same 18 skaters with the only difference being Markkanen as back-up instead of Conklin.
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