Pittsburgh Penguins edged by San Jose Sharks, 2-1

Posted on Jan 21 2018 - 10:58am by Shalene Hixon
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Photo of Tomas Hertl courtesy of Don Smith/NHLI via Getty Images

With their three-game California road trip coming to an end, the Pittsburgh Penguins looked to finish it with a winning record against the San Jose Sharks.

They ended up with a 1-2 record, however, losing to the Sharks 2-1.

The Penguins came out flying to start the game, using their blinding speed to their advantage. A little over three minutes in, their hard work was rewarded with the game’s opening goal.

Conor Sheary (assisted by Dominik Simon and Sidney Crosby) banged home a rebound off of Sharks goalie Aaron Dell, giving the Penguins the early lead.

You would think this would’ve given them total control of the momentum, but you would’ve been sadly mistaken. After that, San Jose turned it on and fought back with a vengeance. Penguins goalie Casey DeSmith did everything he could to keep his team’s lead intact.

But with about two minutes left in the first period, the Sharks were finally able to beat him. Timo Meier scored the equalizer and both teams went into the first intermission tied at one.

The second period was an all-out goalie battle. Both DeSmith and Dell stood on their heads, making save after save to ensure neither would give up the go-ahead goal.

It also put each special teams squad to the test. The Sharks were called for two penalties in the period, but their penalty killers shut down the number one power play in the league. The Penguins penalty killers also were able to keep the Sharks power play off the board in the second.

Towards the end of the period, the Penguins almost had a major injury scare. Sheary blocked a shot with his arm and immediately skated straight to the locker room. Luckily, he was able to return to the game later on.

As the third period began, it felt as if someone was finally about to break through and take the lead. It didn’t take long to find out who, as Tomas Hertl scored on a Sharks power play two minutes into the period.

For the rest of the game, the Penguins had to play catch-up. They threw everything they had at Dell, but he stood tall and kept the Sharks in the lead. As time ticked away, Evgeni Malkin and Patric Hornqvist tried to draw a penalty but they only could manage a four-on-four situation.

The Penguins pulled DeSmith for the extra attacker, and did everything but put the puck in the net. San Jose couldn’t do the same either, whiffing on two empty netters and having a for-sure attempt blocked by Jake Guentzel.

But time finally ran out for the Penguins, as San Jose was able to escape with the win.

Final Thoughts

This was a pretty good game from start to finish. The Penguins didn’t play horribly, they just couldn’t cash in on any chances. DeSmith kept them in for as long as he could, while the offense couldn’t crack Dell.

Oh well, let’s shake it off and move on to the next one. The Penguins come back home to face the Carolina Hurricanes at PPG Paints Arena on Tuesday night. Puck drop is scheduled for 7 p.m.

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