SAN JOSE -- Patrick Marleau scored two goals for the third straight game as the San Jose Sharks rallied to beat the Coyotes, 5-3, in their home opener Thursday night.
Marleau broke a 3-3 tie with 1:53 remaining in regulation when he took a pass from Joe Pavelski and beat goalie Jason LaBarbera with a one-timer. Joe Thornton scored an empty-netter with 2.8 seconds left as the Sharks won for the third time in as many games.
Logan Couture and Martin Havlat also scored for the Sharks, who scored four unanswered goals after falling behind 3-1.
"It's hard to stomach because there's no time for growing pains there," Coyotes Head Coach Dave Tippett said. "We need people to get in there and do the job for us, and get the job done. They didn't get that done tonight."
The Coyotes, now 1-3-0, got goals from Steve Sullivan, Antoine Vermette and Lauri Korpikoski LaBarbera, starting in place of the injured Mike Smith, stopped 30 shots.
The Coyotes and Sharks battled to a 1-1 tie through two periods, but Phoenix scored two quick goals in the third to grab a 3-1 lead.
Vermette put Phoenix ahead 2-1 at 5:01 with a power-play goal, beating Sharks goaltender Antti Niemi to the far side with a sharp-angled shot from the left circle. Korpikoski made it 3-1 at 7:28 by beating Niemi with another sharp-angled shot from the left side after Phoenix won a battle for the puck along the boards.
San Jose cut the lead to 3-2 with 10:45 left in the third when Marleau took Thornton's pass in the low slot and ripped a shot past LaBarbera. Havlat tied it 3-3 at 13:06, jamming a rebound past LaBarbera from close range after a blast from Ryane Clowe.
Smith missed the game with a lower body injury -- he left midway through the first period of the Coyotes' 5-1 victory against Columbus on Wednesday. Smith posted three of his eight shutouts against the Sharks last season. He had a 1.98 goals-against average and .945 save percentage in six starts against San Jose.
LaBarbera was just 3-7-1 lifetime against the Sharks entering the game. But he was solid through the first two periods, picking up where he left off Wednesday when he stopped 21 of 22 shots against Columbus.
The Sharks peppered LaBarbera with 15 shots in the first period -- thanks in large part to three power plays -- but scored only one goal. That came on a Couture tip-in at 19:22 on a power play with defenseman Derek Morris in the box for cross-checking San Jose's Justin Braun.
|Photo by Getty Images.|
Thornton won a faceoff in the left circle, and Pavelski ripped a long shot from the point. Couture, planted in front of the crease, redirected the puck past LaBarbera.
The Sharks had plenty of opportunities to score earlier in the period, but LaBarbera turned away their first seven power play shots. Three of those came when the Sharks had a 5-on-3 advantage for 1:21.
The Coyotes pulled even at 7:11 of the second when Sullivan scored a 5-on-3 power-play goal with Sharks forwards TJ Galiardi and Andrew Desjardins in the box for high-sticking. Galiardi earned a four-minute penalty after drawing blood from Korpikoski.
After being outshot 15-9 in the first period, the Coyotes outshot San Jose 13-2 in the second. On their only power play of the period, the Sharks didn't put a single shot on goal.
"This is how we needed to play on the road," Coyotes defenseman Zbynek Michalek said. "We did it for most of the game then for some reason we stopped playing our game and we were on our heels. Against a team like that, they're going to make their chances."
1. Coyotes forward Steve Sullivan scored his team-high fourth goal of the season. Sullivan has scored four times on just eight shots on goal.
2. Coyotes forwards Antoine Vermette (goal), Mikkel Boedker (assist) and Dave Moss (assist), and defenseman Derek Morris (assist) all extended their point streaks to three games.
3. The Coyotes played the entire third period without center Matthew Lombardi, who suffered an upper-body injury earlier in the game and did not return.
4. For the second straight game, the Coyotes were without center Martin Hanzal and defenseman Rostislav Klesla, who are day-to-day with lower-body injuries.
5. Before the game, the Coyotes recalled goaltender Chad Johnson and defenseman David Rundblad from Portland of the AHL. Johnson dressed and served as LaBarbera's backup. Rundblad was scratched.