The San Jose Sharks swept a three-game road trip, and started a winning streak this past week. After beating the Washington Capitals, 2-1, and the Florida Panthers, 3-0, the Sharks continued to have success on the road against the Tampa Bay Lightning early Saturday afternoon, where they won 5-4.
The high scoring game included two hat tricks, one from each team. The first came from Lightning’s Martin St Louis, who scored all four goals for his team. Even after a strong solo performance, Lightning was unable to hold onto the lead because San Jose Shark Joe Pavelski answered St Louis hat trick with one of his own.
This was Pavelski’s first NHL career hat trick. In his eighth season with the Sharks, Pavelski’s hat trick could not have come at a better time. His first two goals were only 21 seconds apart. His third goal was originally given to Matt Irwin, but after review, was credited to Pavelski. His hat trick went unanswered, and gave the Sharks the lead.
Earlier Sharks’ goals came from Matt Nieto and Patrick Marleau. Nieto was the first to score in the nine-goal game. Nieto’s fourth goal of the season, was also his second goal in consecutive games. He also assisted Marleau’s goal.
In between Nieto and Marleau’s goal, St Louis got his first goal of the game on the power play when Tyler Kennedy went to the box for hooking at 11:39. St Louis scored shortly after, at 11:56.
Marleau responded under a minute later, 12:52 in the first, with his 21st goal of the season. St Louis was quick to respond, scoring two goals before the end of the period. He then got another power play goal early in the second to give the Lightning a 4-2 lead.
Pavelski’s goals came at 12:48, 13:09, and 19:00 in the second period. The Sharks held onto the one goal lead for the last minute of the second, as well as the entirety of the third.
Antti Niemi made 25 saves throughout the game. Six of those saves happened in the third period, allowing the Sharks to clinch onto their lead.
The Sharks have been struggling to win consecutive games since last month. Their last streak was four wins between December 21st and 29th. Since then, they have had record of win-loss-win-loss… and so on. They finally broke this habit with three consecutive wins on the road. They will be playing the Calgary Flames on Monday back at the Shark Tanks, where they will hopefully keep their winning streak alive.