SAN JOSE, Calif.
-- The Sharks came into Game 2 of the Western Conference Semifinals looking to tie the series at one a piece, but what they found were the same defensive mistakes lurking and a tough loss to the Stars with a score of 5-2.
Dallas now leads the series 2-0 as the teams travel to Texas for Game 3 on Tuesday night.
When San Jose and Dallas took to the ice for Game 2 of their Western Conference Semifinal battle, the Stars had the extra advantage of seeing Sergei Zubov skate for the first time this postseason.
San Jose had two unsuccessful power plays early in the first, but with more than 11 minutes left in the first, they had an excellent four-on-three situation for 1:16. That however also expired without a goal, but with 14 seconds left in the subsequent five-on-four, San Jose hit pay dirt.
Craig Rivet took the puck at the blueline and eyed Joe Pavelski
out front. The shot came so the Wisconsin native could find it and he redirected it to the top of the net for his fourth goal of the postseason.
Dallas would tie the contest with less than five minutes left in the first. After a stellar save by Nabokov, Mike Ribeiro gathered the rebound behind the goal line and banked it off the Sharks netminder before he could recover from the first stop.
The period had several chances by both clubs, but the netminders kept things even at one.
Six and a half minutes into the second, San Jose came within inches of moving ahead. After some extended pressure moments earlier, a Jeremy Roenick shot handcuffed Marty Turco and the rebound sat just off the goal line in the crease. As Torrey Mitchell
appeared set to knock it in, Stu Barnes skated in and blocked the effort.
San Jose did retake the lead with five minutes remaining in the middle stanza. Milan Michalek bolted through the neutral zone with speed. He did not have the puck, but had two defenders closing on him. All-Star blueliner Brian Campbell saw the two defenders, but still had enough room to deliver the puck. The perfect pass sent Michalek in alone on Turco and, after forcing the Stars goalie to the ice, put the shot to the back of the net.
|Stars goalie Marty Turco stops a shot by Sharks center Jeremy Roenick on Sunday, April 27, 2008. Dallas won 5-2. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez) |
Mike Modano did hit a post for the Stars late in the period, but the Sharks took the 2-1 lead to the intermission.
The one goal lead did not last long as Dallas scored just 32 seconds into the period. When Pavelski lost his edge in the defensive zone, it left Brad Richards alone with the puck. He took two strides and pounded the puck inside the far post.
A few minutes later the Stars were leading by a 3-2 count. As some four-on-four play conclude Dallas went on a brief power play. They did not need much time thanks to Zubov who pushed a spin-o-rama pass across the crease that Modano pounded into the open net.
Dallas’ third period onslaught continued when Niklas Hagman make it three straight tallies. Richards carried the puck in the zone and took his man behind the goal line. The former playoff MVP then centered the puck and it bounced off the post right to Hagman who buried the shot.
With 2:45 left in the third, Wilson put Brian Boucher in to finish the contest.
Hagman added an empty netter with 1:15 left to finish the scoring.
The Sharks lose their second in a row to the Stars with a final score of 5-2. LINES
Game 3 between San Jose and Dallas will be Tuesday at 4:30 p.m. in Texas and will be carried on CSN Bay Area, 98.5 KFOX and www.sjsharks.com.