SAN JOSE (AP) — Mikkel Boedker knew the Sharks’ power play has been fizzling lately. He wasn’t about to miss another opportunity.
Boedker scored San Jose’s first power-play goal in a month, helping lift the Sharks past the St. Louis Blues 2-0 on Thursday night.
Tomas Hertl added an empty-net goal in the closing seconds, and Martin Jones made 16 saves for the Sharks, who have won three of four. San Jose has also won five of six at home.
“It definitely felt good to get that in the back of the net,” Boedker said. “We knew about the opportunities that we’d missed. I think we were 0 for 28, we knew that. We know what’s going on. It’s just a matter of sticking with it. We have All-Star players in this group that are going to dig us out of the hole.”
Jake Allen recorded 34 saves and was the only healthy goalie with NHL experience available to the Blues. Carter Hutton was a late scratch and Ville Husso, who the Blues recalled from the AHL, will join the team in Los Angeles.
“Jake was awesome,” Blues coach Mike Yeo said. “It was a tough situation and he responded well. It was the most complete game he’s played in a while.”
The Blues, losers of eight of their past nine, have had trouble getting the puck into the net lately, with 15 goals over their past nine games, including back-to-back shutouts. Carl Gunnarsson, Dmitri Jaskin, Vince Dunn, Tage Thompson and Vladimir Sobotka all have goalless streaks of at least 10 games.
“The work ethic is there and the defensive focus was there,” Yeo said. “It was way too many turnovers. You can’t create when you’re defending and chasing all night.”
By contrast, the Sharks had scored 30 goals over their past nine games, though all had been at even strength. The Sharks had not scored on the power play since Feb. 8, a span of 12 games.
“The boys played really well tonight. It’s the way we need to play moving forward,” Jones said. “It’s a good thing if I’m not getting too many shots.”
Boedker ended a streak of 39 consecutive even-strength goals with 7:48 left to play. He took a pass in front of the net from Joonas Donskoi and fired at Allen, who blocked the shot but the puck skipped off his pads and knuckled off the right post and into the net.
“We know how important points are, and the guys were ready to play,” Sharks coach Peter DeBoer said. “It wasn’t an easy game. The Blues battled hard, their goalie made some big saves. What I liked was our resiliency. We stuck with it, stuck with it, didn’t try and force it, knew that if we stayed with it long enough it would come and eventually we got rewarded.”
The goal was set up when Kyle Brodziak was whistled for holding the stick, just the second Blues penalty of the game.
“It’s hard to say what angle he had. The stick just came up in my arm,” Brodziak said. “It was bad timing. I have to watch it carefully but at the time it didn’t feel like a penalty that would decide the game.”
NOTES: Blues C Brayden Schenn appeared in his 500th NHL game. … Sharks F Timo Meier played in his 100th NHL game. … Hutton sustained a neck injury and St. Louis signed Palo Alto native Ben Wexler as an emergency backup for Thursday’s game. Wexler played hockey at Illinois.
Sharks: vs. Washington on Saturday.
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