St. Louis Blues

Sharks use big 1st period to beat Blues 6-3

By WARREN MAYES

ST. LOUIS (AP) – Tomas Hertl, Logan Couture and Joe Thornton each scored two goals, powering the San Jose Sharks to a 6-3 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Monday night.

Thornton also had two assists as San Jose improved to 21-9-2 on the road, matching their total road wins from last season. At home, the Sharks are just 11-12-3.

The Blues lost goalie Brian Elliott to a lower-body injury in the first period. San Jose defenseman Matt Tennyson in the first period and after he was driven into the glass.

Hertl had two of San Jose’s three goals in the first. He also scored in the Sharks’ 5-2 loss at Carolina on Friday.

San Jose went up 1-0 when Hertl grabbed a loose puck behind the net and jammed it in against Elliott at 4:44.

Blues forward Ryan Reaves rammed Tennyson into the glass behind the San Jose goal and smashed his face into the divider. Tennyson dropped flat on his back at 8:37, and Reaves received a 5-minute major for boarding and a game misconduct penalty.

Hertl scored his 14th goal when he poked in the puck from the cease at 10:18. Elliott stopped Joonas Donskoi’s shot, but the puck got behind him and Hertl pushed it over the line for a power-play goal.

Robert Bortuzzo then got a slashing penalty, giving the Sharks a two-man advantage for 1:19.

San Jose made the short-handed Blues pay when Couture scored from in front the net at 12:59.

Elliott got hurt on the play. The Blues said he sustained a lower-body injury.

Jake Allen replaced Elliott and finished with 15 saves. The Blues activated Allen from injured reserve Sunday.

St. Louis cut the lead to 3-1 when David Backes scored a power-play goal from the front of the net at 17:36 of the first.

A power-play goal by Vladimir Tarasenko at 11:25 of the second got the Blues within one. Tarasenko, who also had two assists, took a pass from Kevin Shattenkirk at the top of the circle and snapped a quick wrist shot by goalie Martin Jones for his 29th goal.

But the Sharks scored 20 seconds later when Couture tapped in a loose puck by the crease.

San Jose made it 5-2 when Thornton scored on a backhander at 7:26 of the third period. He has 52 points in 46 career games against the Blues.

After a review, officials ruled against a Sharks challenge to allow a goal by Jay Bouwmeester at 9:50.

Thornton’s empty-net goal at 18:35 ended the scoring.

The Sharks beat the Blues 3-1 on Feb. 4 in St. Louis in the only other meeting of the season. Since that game, the Blues had been unbeaten in regulation (6-0-1). St. Louis is 7-2-1 in February with both losses coming to the Sharks.

NOTES: San Jose improved to 25-2-1 when it scores the first goal and 19-1 when leading after the first period. … The Sharks acquired defenseman Roman Polak and forward Nick Spaling in a trade with Toronto on Monday. The Sharks gave up 2017 and 2018 second-round picks and forward Raffi Torres in the deal.

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