Dec 19, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Avalanche goalie Semyon Varlamov (1) is congratulated for the win by defenseman Andre Benoit (61) and defenseman Erik Johnson (6) and left wing Patrick Bordeleau (58) and defenseman Jan Hejda (8) against the Edmonton Oilers at the Pepsi Center. The Avalanche defeated the Oilers 4-2. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Colorado Avalanche Edge San Jose Sharks, 4-3

The Colorado Avalanche would squeak past the San Jose Sharks Saturday afternoon, earning the win by the final score of 4-3. Nathan MacKinnon had one of his best games of his young career as the rookie netted two goals for his 11th and 12th of the season.

The Avalanche would get a power-play chance in the first period as Sharks Justin Braun was called for interference on Avalanche center Matt Duchene. Nathan MacKinnon would strike for the Avs collecting his 11th goal of the season, assisted by Andre Benoit and Paul Stastny. The Avalanche would lead the game 1-0 after the end of the first period.

Avalanche winger Jamie McGinn would bury one past Antti Niemi, scoring his 9th goal of the season on the assist from Matt Duchene. The Avs would keep piling on as Erik Johnson would strike just under a minute later, picking up his 7th goal of the season. Captain Gabriel Landeskog and Paul Stastny would pick up the points. Just as you blinked your eye, rookie Nathan MacKinnon would score yet again just 14 seconds after Johnson. Mac would collect his 2nd goal of the game on the assist from John Mitchell and Cody McLeod, giving the Avalanche the 4-0 lead.

The San Jose Sharks would come on, as Joe Pavelski capitalized on a Jan Hejda slashing penalty, collecting the power-play goal for his 18th goal of the season. He would be assisted by Patrick Marleau and Joe Thornton. Just under three minutes later, Patrick Marleau would shoot one past Semyon Varlamov for his 19th goal of the season, trimming the lead to two. Jason Demers and Matt Nieto would pick up the points on Marleau’s goal.

Logan Couture kept the scoring going into the third period, collecting his 14th goal of the season just 5:44 into the third. Patrick Marleau and Scott Hannan picked up the assists. Colorado’s defenseman Jan Hejda would pick up an interference penalty late in the third, but Varlamov was solid in net, killing off the power-play as the Avalanche came away with the victory 4-3.

This game would include a combined 28 penalty minutes as the second period got scrappy. Nine penalties would be called in the second period which featured a fight between Avs forward Maxime Talbot and Sharks Andrew Desjardins.

Three Stars:

3: Erik Johnson (COL): One goal, 5 shots on net, +1.

2: Semyon Varlamov (COL): 30/33 savesm .909% save percentage.

1: Nathan MacKinnon (COL): 2 goals, 4 shots on net, +2.

The Colorado Avalanche (26-11-4), 56 points, will continue their home stand against the Calgary Flames Monday night. Puck-drop is scheduled for 9:00 PM ET, 7:00 PM MT.

Tags: Colorado Avalanche

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