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Turco makes 20 saves for fourth shutout of season, Stars beat Sharks 3-0

The Canadian Press
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The Hockey News
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Turco makes 20 saves for fourth shutout of season, Stars beat Sharks 3-0

The Canadian Press
By:

Jeff Halpern, Jussi Jokinen and Brenden Morrow each scored goals as Dallas improved to 12-2 against the Pacific Division - with one of those defeats coming to the Sharks on Oct. 17. Turco, who also added a rare goalie assist on Jokinen's ninth goal, blanked San Jose for the second time this season for 28th career shutout after he made 25 saves against the Sharks on Dec. 4.

It was the third meeting of the season and third shutout between the teams, who each won on their home ice with shutouts. The Sharks and Stars are two of the NHL's top defensive franchises, both among the top three in the league for fewest goals allowed this season entering the game.

San Jose, playing for the first time in five days, had won four of its last five but looked flat on both ends.

Dallas appeared to have more energy despite playing on back-to-back nights after losing 4-1 at Anaheim on Wednesday. The Stars bounced back with an impressive win after losing three of their previous four, having given up 15 goals during that span - a stretch that sparked a closed-door meeting after losing to the Ducks.

Mike Modano missed his eighth straight game with a hip injury sustained against the Sharks on Dec. 4, when he had the only goal of the contest. Modano did not travel with the team for this three-game road trip that ended before a disappointed sellout crowd in the Shark Tank.

Halpern put the Stars on the board with his fourth goal of the season 6:56 into the game when got the rebound after a long shot by Philippe Boucher bounced off defenceman Kyle McLaren's stick. Halpern shot into an open net after goalie Vesa Toskala got screened by McLaren. Boucher got the assist and he has recorded points in nine of his last 11 games.

Jokinen, a shootout expert, scored on a one-on-one in which he skated behind McLaren and backhanded the puck past Toskala's right shoulder.

San Jose had its chance to rally in the third period thwarted.

Christian Ehrhoff's attempt hit Turco's pads and the Sharks also missed the rebound when it hit the far post. They also had a near power-play goal about a minute later that Turco covered.

Morrow picked up a bad pass and sent the puck to Trevor Daley, whose shot bounced the behind the net. Morrow recovered and flicked it in off Toskala's pad with 7:43 to play.

Toskala made 23 saves in his first appearance against Dallas this season after Evgeni Nabokov started in goal for the first two meetings.

Notes: The Sharks reassigned G Dimitri Patzold to their AHL affiliate in Worcester, Mass. ... Stars forward Jere Lehtinen returned to the ice after missing Wednesday's game with the flu. ... Dallas' Stu Barnes had his two-game goal streak snapped. ... Joe Thornton's stretch of six straight contests with an assist ended.

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Turco makes 20 saves for fourth shutout of season, Stars beat Sharks 3-0