TEMPE, Ariz. (AP)Matt Nieto scored a tie-breaking goal nine seconds into the third period and Jaycob Megna scored with six minutes remaining and the San Jose Sharks 4-2 beat the Arizona Coyotes on Tuesday night.
Megna’s goal, his first of the season, came on an assist from Erik Karlsson, who leads the NHL with 42 assists and has points in 15 of the last 16 games. His franchise-record 14-game scoring streak ended Saturday.
Following the third period faceoff, Alexander Barabanov won the puck behind the Coyotes’ net and fed it to Logan Couture, who hit Nieto at the edge of the crease for a 3-2 lead.
”The faceoff is kind of a broken play,” Nieto said. ”I just try to work hard for them and work to areas. I did that on the goal and (Couture) made a great play. It really set the tone for the third (period) and the rest of the game.”
Kevin Labanc and Nico Sturm also scored for the Sharks, who had lost five of six coming in. Kaapo Kahkonen had 27 saves in his third start in four games. The Sharks scored the final three goals.
”He’s a honest player – you know what you are getting out of Matt night in and night out,” Sharks coach David Quinn said. ”He’s a very reliable guy. He’s got some skill to complement your top players. He’s done a good job. Good to see him get rewarded statistically. It’s a good way to start a second half.”
Barrett Hayton and Christian Fischer scored for the Coyotes, and Karel Vejmelka had 29 saves in his sixth start in seven games. Jakob Chychrun and Shayne Gostisbehere had two assists.
The Coyotes lost their sixth straight. They are 7-5-2 at home, the fewest home games in the league.
”They worked hard and they played a good game, but we did as well,” Coyotes coach Andre Tourigny said. ”For me, it’s a 50-50 game. We play the same game tomorrow against the same team, we may win 4-2.”
San Jose scored first. Tomas Hertl’s centering pass caromed off a Coyotes defender and Labanc picked it up, flipping a wrist shot from the circle high to the glove side at 4:39 of the first period for a 1-0 lead. Hertl has 25 assists.
Hayton scored his second first-period goal in as many games to tie it at 1-1 two minutes later, back-handing in a loose puck in the slot. Fischer made it 2-1 on a breakaway late in the period, beating Labanc out of the zone and taking a two-line pass from Gostisbehere before scoring high to the glove side.
Sturm tied it at 2-all when he scored after a cross-ice pass from Nick Bonino six minutes into the second period. Bonino was playing in his 800th NHL game.
Coyotes F Clayton Keller played in his 400th game, the sixth player from the 2016 draft class to reach that plateau, joining Matthew Tkachuk, Auston Matthews, Patrik Laine, Alex DeBrincat and Pierre-Luc Dubois. All but second-rounder DeBrincat were taken among the first seven picks. . Coyotes F Dylan Guenther had 16 minutes of ice time in his second game back after scoring the winning goal in Canada’s 3-2 overtime victory Friday over the Czech Republic in the 2023 IIHF World Junior Championship. . Sharks F Noah Gregor was a healthy scratch for a sixth straight game. . Coyotes F Liam O’Brien (upper body) missed his 11th straight game.
Sharks: At Los Angeles on Wednesday
Coyotes: Hosts Ottawa on Thursday
AP NHL: https://www.apnews.com/hub/NHL and https://www.twitter.com/AP–NHL