Sharks force Game 6 in Stanley Cup finals

Photo by Joe Sargent

The San Jose Sharks defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins in Penguins territory with a 4-2 victory during Game 5 of the Stanley Cup finals Thursday night at Consol Energy Center.

The Sharks opened up the game with two goals, one by Brent Burns and the other by Logan Couture, in the first three minutes. The Penguins answered with two goals of their own, but could not score another to retie the game.

The Sharks regained the lead before the end of the first and were able to keep it thanks to magnificent goaltending by Martin Jones. Jones finished Game 5 with 44 saves and a .957 save percentage. He holds a save percentage of .933 in the series.

“We’ve seen him play tremendous all year for us and tonight he was great,” Shsrks captain Joe Povelski said. “There were a lot of shots. He stopped the first one, but he made that second save point blank, so it really kept us going and allowed us to keep playing. He was tremendous tonight.”

Jones is at the top of his game after a rough start with the San Jose Sharks. The Sharks acquired Jones last Summer from the Boston Bruins, who previously acquired him from the Los Angeles Kings. Jones was a backup goaltender for Jonathan Quick.

“We started the season and it didn’t start as smoothly as we wanted,” Sharks coach Pete DeBoer said. “He just kept battling and battling.”

Jones, who blocked a shot by Penguins’s Nick Bonino in the third, has impressed his coaches and teammates. They have confidence that he can carry them to the Stanley Cup championship.

“It’s relaxing to have a guy like that bail you out so many times,” Tierney said. “Guys feel confident making plays in their end and they won’t panic because if they make a mistake he will bail them out.”

Jones and the Sharks look to continue their momentum Sunday in San Jose at 8PM/ET.

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