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Couture scores in OT as Sharks beat Devils to end skid


EditorsNote: Removes Evander in 6th graf; tweaks 7th graf to note short-handed

Logan Couture scored the overtime game-winner in his second game back from an injury to lift the San Jose Sharks to a 3-2 win over the New Jersey Devils on Thursday.

Couture, who returned Tuesday from a broken ankle suffered Jan. 7, helped his team snap a five-game losing streak. The Sharks' losing streak included a 2-1 loss to the Devils on Feb. 20.

Evander Kane, who got the puck to Couture in overtime, had two assists, while rookie Mario Ferraro and Marcus Sorensen each scored once for the Sharks. Travis Zajac and Nikita Gusev had the goals for the Devils, who saw their win streak end at three games.

The Sharks didn't start well, giving the Devils an easy goal in the first period. At 11:09 during a goalmouth scramble, defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic tried sweeping the puck out of danger behind goalie Martin Jones. Vlasic instead knocked it behind the goal-line, and Zajac was credited with the goal.

The Devils went up 2-0 when Gusev pickpocketed Sharks defender Jacob Middleton in front of the net and deftly slid the puck through Jones' open pads.

The Sharks got both goals back in the second, however. Kane was hauled down in the corner but got back up to give Ferraro's point shot a perfect screen in front of Devils netminder Cory Schneider at the 2:20 mark.

With Kane in the penalty box for hooking, Joel Kellman skated up the ice and sent the puck past a falling Damon Severson to Sorensen, who tied the game at 2-2 with the short-handed marker.

Schneider, making consecutive starts for the Devils for the first time since October, withstood two consecutive power plays for the Sharks in the third to give his team a chance. The Devils couldn't respond, even on a man-advantage of their own late in the third.

Just 38 seconds into the extra period, Couture won the faceoff in the Devils' end and wrapped the puck around the corner. Kane won the puck battle in the slot and got the puck back to Couture, who had an open net on Schneider's glove side.

The win kicked off a six-game homestand for the Sharks, who outshot the Devils 30-24.

--Field Level Media

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