By Aaron Francis
The Anaheim Ducks took a trip up north to face their division rivals the San Jose Sharks. These two teams met earlier in the season in a game that saw the Sharks win 2-1 in overtime. The starter for the Ducks was Jonathan Bernier and for the Sharks Martin Jones was in goal.
This period did not start off well for the Ducks, however, they ended the first up 2-1 on the Sharks. An early interference penalty was called on Corey Perry and the Ducks went on the penalty kill. The Ducks were able to keep San Jose from gaining any dangerous chances on their power play and killed it off. They would not be as fortunate later on as Hampus Lindholm was called for delay of game. On this San Jose power play, the Sharks were able to work the puck to Logan Couture who ripped a shot past Jonathan Bernier. Korbinian Holzer acted as an unfortunate screen against Jonathan Bernier and the Sharks were up 1-0. Later in the period Ryan Garbutt got a burst of speed entering the Sharks zone and crashed into Martin Jones dislodging the net. The on-ice officials huddled up and what at first looked to be an Anaheim Penalty, turned into a goal for the Ducks. Brent Burns had been tailing Ryan Garbutt and it was determined that the puck had crossed the goal line before the net had been dislodged. San Jose would use their coaches challenge but the goal was not overturned and the game was tied 1-1. After a lengthy review, the game continued, and it wasn’t long until the Ducks were back on the board. The Ducks were able to get the puck into the slot where Rickard Rakell tipped the puck in past Martin Jones. Now up 2-1 the Ducks had much more energy in the Sharks zone. This momentum would only be slowed by a tripping penalty on Ryan Garbutt that would carry over into the second period. The shot total after the first was 9-7 Sharks.
The Ducks continued their strong play this period and maintained a one-goal lead, finishing the second up 3-2. They started the period by killing off the remainder of the tripping penalty from the first period. A strong Sharks shift trapped the Ducks on the ice for a long time and eventually resulted in a goal. Dylan DeMelo scored from the point similar to the earlier Sharks goal. Jonathan Bernier never got a good look at the shot and the Sharks had tied the game at 2-2. At a crucial point in the game, the Ducks did not fall back defensively and were able to get a power play. Justin Braun was called for elbowing and the Ducks got their first Power Play of the game. Off a clearing attempt by Brent Burns, Corey Perry was able to keep the puck in the Sharks zone. Ryan Kesler dug the puck loose and found Ryan Getzlaf who quickly roofed the puck past Martin Jones. The power play goal put the Ducks ahead 3-2 and this lead would hold the rest of the period. The shot total at the end of the second was 18-17 Sharks.
The Ducks were able to hold on to their 3-2 lead this period and get the win. Rather than sit back and defend this period, the Ducks continued to pressure the Sharks and had several great chances to extend their lead. Ryan Getzlaf flung a pass through the neutral zone to Corey Perry who was ruled offside. Had the play been onside, Corey Perry would have had a clear breakaway at the goal. Antoine Vermette fluttered a shot towards the goal that was blocked then recovered by Andrew Cogliano who was robed in close by Martin Jones. Ryan Kesler also had a strong play around the crease that was saved by Martin Jones and caused some tension between the players on the ice. Within the final 2 minutes, the Sharks went all in and pulled Martin Jones for the extra attacker. Anaheim had a few chances at the empty net including one from Jakob Silfverberg which was knocked away from the goal. The Sharks tried their hardest but were not able to beat Jonathan Bernier who held on to get the win for the Ducks. The final shot total was 26-23 Ducks.
The Ducks were finally able to get a win and it couldn’t have come at a better time. Despite being down 1-0 early, the team came together and played a much better effort than in recent outings. Consistency in the offense was much stronger in this game and they received two goals from their top line.
In their past three games, the Ducks hadn’t scored more than two goals and as a result had lost them all. When the Ducks score at least 3 goals this season, their record improves tremendously. The Ducks had been at the mercy of some questionable goal calls but in this game, they got their break and were able to take advantage of it. Ryan Getzlaf played extremely well this game with a goal and an assist making a huge impact on the top lines production. The Ducks need to take this road win and use it to continue improving especially on offense.
Ryan Getzlaf scored his 2nd goal and 18th point this season.
Jonathan Bernier finished with 21 saves on 23 shots and a .913 save percentage.
The Ducks were 1 for 1 tonight on the power play.
Anaheim is 10-0-0 when scoring three or more goals this season.
The Ducks earned their second win when being scored on first. Their record this season when being scored on first is 2-7-3.
The Ducks will close out November at home against the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday at 7:00 pm
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