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Frank Vatrano scores late in OT to lift Ducks past Sharks, 3-2

AP Sports Writer

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Frank Vatrano made sure the long flight to Toronto for the All-Star Game festivities would go a little quicker.

The Anaheim right wing scored with 52 seconds left in overtime Wednesday night to give the Ducks a 3-2 victory over the San Jose Sharks.

Vatrano put a wrist shot past Kaapo Kahkonen for his 22nd goal of the season. What made him happier is that broke a six-game drought.

“It’s good, it’s been awhile,” said Vatrano, who leads the Ducks and goals and is second in points with 36. “When you grip your stick a little higher you’re not scoring, so it’s good to see one go in.”

Troy Terry, who extended his points streak to six games, tied it with 1:01 remaining in regulation and assisted on Vatrano’s winner that gave Anaheim its third win in four games.

With the goalie pulled, Terry beat Kahkonen with a wrist shot with plenty of traffic around the net for his 15th goal of the season. Terry, who has four goals and 10 points in the past six games, has a team-high 37 points.

“He’s been the heart and soul of this team. Every single game he is the hardest working guy,” said Terry of Vatrano. “I didn’t realize he had not scored in awhile, at least by his standards. So just to be able to get that and now he gets to go have the experience of a lifetime that he deserves.”

Vatrano and Tomas Hertl, the Sharks’ representative to the All-Star Game, took a chartered flight from Los Angeles to Toronto after the game.

Isac Lundestrom also scored for Anaheim and John Gibson made 26 saves. Adam Henrique also extended his points steak to six games with an assist on Terry’s goal.

“Obviously, it’s great timing. It’s funny, before overtime started, I was thinking, ‘When was the last time Frank scored a goal?’ I couldn’t recall. He had scored so many early,” Anaheim coach Greg Cronin said. “When I saw him racing down the ice and Troy had the puck, everybody stood up, so I couldn’t actually see the goal but I had a good feeling it was going to go in.”

Marc-Edouard Vlasic scored for the third straight game for San Jose. Anthony Duclair also scored for the Sharks and Kahkonen stopped 31 shots.

Vlasic’s slap shot from the point with 2:03 left in the second gave the Sharks a 2-1 advantage and made him the fourth NHL defenseman age 36 or older in the past 10 years to have a goals streak of at least three games. The others were Brent Burns (2022-23, 2021-22), Dan Boyle (2013-14) and Zdeno Chara (2013-14).

All five of Vlasic’s goals this season have come in his last nine games.

Lundestrom opened the scoring when he put in a rebound 2:12 into the game. It was the Swedish forward’s second goal of the season after he missed the first 36 games due to a torn Achilles he suffered during offseason training.

Duclair evened it on the power play at 6:59 and picked up his first point in seven games when he put in a rebound from the slot. Shakir Mukhamadullin pick up his first NHL point with an assist. Mukhamadullin, playing in his third NHL game, was the 20th overall pick by New Jersey in 2020 and was traded to the Sharks last year as part of the Timo Meier trade.

Hertl missed his second straight game due to a lower-body injury. Forward Alexander Barabanov was injured during the second period and did not return.

“We battled. I mean, you’re going back-to-back, you lose Barby (Barabanov) halfway through the game and they put on a pretty good push in the third period,” San Jose coach David Quinn said. “You give them a lot of credit and we almost get out of it, but you can’t question our compete.”


Sharks: At Winnipeg on Feb. 14.

Ducks: Host Edmonton on Feb. 9.



Article Topic Follows: AP California News

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