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Saturday Night Hockey: Sharks 3, Predators 0

by San Jose Sharks Staff / San Jose Sharks
The Sharks defeat the Nashville Predators 3-0 at HP Pavilion for their first regular season home victory at HP Pavilion on Saturday night.


Click here for pictures (PICS ) and video (WATCH ) from Saturday night's game.

Milan Michalek, Jeremy Roenick and Patrick Marleau scored for San Jose and Evgeni Nabokov earned his first regular season shutout after making 22 saves on the night.

San Jose was forced to play tough defense early when Joe Thornton took a hooking penalty 1:11 into the first. Before the team finished the intial kill, Christian Ehrhoff was called for cross checking, giving Nashville ten seconds of a 5-on-3. The Sharks were able to kill both penalties successfully.

In the seventh minute of play, San Jose got their first scoring chance of the night when Roenick picked off a bad clearing attempt by Greg Zanon. Roenick intercepted the pass between the circles and found Rob Davison waiting alone on the edge of the crease. Davison one-timed the shot, but Chris Mason stepped up in the crease to make the save.

After Steve Bernier and Scott Nichol received matching roughing penalties at 9:52, the Sharks earned their first power play of the night when Ryan Suter was caled for hooking Thornton at 10:57. San Jose had difficulties settling their attack with the man advantage and failed to ignite any scoring opportunities.

Marleau put some fancy moves on Greg de Vries late in the first, and when the Nashville defenseman couldn't corral Marleau, he tripped the Sharks captain at 19:06. San Jose went back on the power play, but again failed to put any points on the board and the period ended 0-0.

After earning a 5-on-3 advantage from penalties to de Vries (tripping) and Nicholl (delay of game) the Sharks were able to take a 1-0 lead when Roenick capitalized for his 498th career goal and the Sharks first tally of the night. While streaking down the left side, Roenick got his first power play goal of the season after recieving a cross-ice pass from Thornton and tapping the puck in along the inside of the post. Roenick is now only two goals away from becoming the third American-born player to score 500 goals.

San Jose looked to increase the advantage when some unpleasantries from Nashville's Scott Nichol proved Team Teal a late second period power play.  Michalek provideda rise from the crowd when he used a spin-o-rama move to force the puck toward the net, but the opportunity could not be finished.

With seconds remaining in the middle period, a Sharks takeaway allowed Thornton to skate behind the goal line.  From there, he found Michalek in the slot, but Mason snagged the one-timer.  San Jose did however maintain the one-goal lead as the clubs headed toward the second intermission.

Nashville appeared headed for an odd-man rush six minutes ino the third, but Michalek was working hard on the backcheck and dove to break up the play.

When Kyle McLaren was sent to the box midway through the third, Michalek was there to ruin things, as his breadaway effort was the best offensive chance in the two minutes.

After killing off anothe penalty, Team Teal struck for an insurance tally.  A beautiful feed up ice from Christian Ehrhoff found Torrey Mitchell near center ice and the puck barely touched his stick before moving on to Marleau skating full speed through the neutral zone.

Taking advantage of a smidge of daylight, and Mike Grier causing a distraction on the far side, Marleau wristed one that Mason deflected enough to send up in the air, only to see it land behind him and in the net.

Nashville pulled Mason with two minutes remaining in a desperate attempt to tie the contest. Their efforts were unsucessful as Joe Thornton picked off a pass at center ice and gave up the puck to Michalek for the open-net goal.

LINES
Clowe - Thornton - Cheechoo
Michalek - Marleau - Bernier
Rissmiller - Mitchell - Grier
Davison - Pavelski - Roenick

OZOLINSH UPDATE
Sandis Ozolinish, who is on a Professional Tryout Agreement with the Sharks AHL affiliate Worcester Sharks, was minus-1 tonight in a 2-1 win over the Lowell Devils.

NEXT GAME
Tonight's game concudes the Sharks two-game home stand and the team will leave for a four-game road trip on Sunday. San Jose will faceoff against the Calgary Flames on Monday, October 22 at 6:00 pm and the game can will be broadcast on 98.5 FFOX and SJSHARKS.com.
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