SAN JOSE – The Sharks failed to hold on to a third period lead, but won in a shootout over Colorado, 3-2, at HP Pavilion on Tuesday night.
In the shootout, Patrick Marleau scored in the fourth round, going five-hole on Semyon Varlamov, and Antti Niemi stopped John Mitchell to give San Jose the extra point. The Sharks improved to 3-2 in shootouts this season, and are 6-1-2 at home.
Colorado tied the game late. Jan Hejda’s slap shot ended up sitting just outside of the crease, where Mark Olver lifted it over Niemi at 16:44 of the third period.
The Sharks went on a power play with 1:02 left in regulation on Jamie McGinn’s high stick minor, but could not convert. In overtime, Varlamov robbed Joe Thornton from the circle as time expired on the penalty.
TJ Galiardi’s first goal gave the Sharks a 2-1 lead. James Sheppard set up Galiardi, with a strong move behind the net and a backhanded pass through the crease to Galiardi’s stick for an easy tip-in at 2:55.
For the former Avalanche forward, who has been a healthy scratch for San Jose in six games, it was his second career goal in a Sharks uniform after he came to the club at last year’s trade deadline as part of the deal for McGinn.
Sheppard played a role in Colorado’s game-tying first period goal, too. The forward sent a pass from the defensive zone towards defenseman Jason Demers, but it was off the mark. The Avalanche kept the puck in the zone and Chuck Kobesew put in a loose puck after a Hejda point shot at 12:13.
It didn’t take long for the Sharks to take the lead. Matt Hunwick’s turnover deep in the Colorado zone led to Thornton finding Logan Couture in the slot for a redirection past Varlamov at the 25-second mark.
The goal snapped an eight-game scoreless drought for Couture, and was his first since Feb. 4 at Anaheim.
The game was the first time Brad Stuart and Gabriel Landeskog were on the ice together since Stuart’s hit of the Colorado captain on Jan. 26 kept him out for 11 games with a concussion. P.A. Parenteau was called for charging Stuart at 14:06 of the first period.
The Sharks failed on all five power play attempts against Colorado, including one at the end of regulation that continued in overtime. San Jose killed off both Avalanche attempts.
Niemi, who was making his sixth straight start, stopped 25 shots to improve to 8-4-3.
Varlamov turned aside 39 Sharks shots in regulation, but allowed Marleau and Michal Handzus to score in the shootout.
Tommy Wingels (undisclosed) did not play, after going hard into the boards, face-first, in Dallas on Saturday. Ryane Clowe served the second of a two-game suspension, while the just recalled Matt Irwin was scratched.
Brent Burns is on injured reserve and will miss Thursday’s game against the Red Wings as well.
Colorado’s leading scorer, Matt Duchene, missed the game with a reported groin injury.
The Sharks continue a three-game homestand against Detroit on Thursday and Nashville on Saturday, both at 7:30 p.m. After that, nine of the next 11 games are on the road.