St. Louis, MO (SportsNetwork.com) - Logan Couture and Joe Pavelski recorded power-play goals less than a minute apart in the first period, spurring the still-unbeaten San Jose Sharks to a 6-2 rout of the St. Louis Blues in a tension-filled showdown from Scottrade Center.
San Jose went 3-for-7 with the man advantage en route to its sixth consecutive win to start the season, with Patrick Marleau also scoring on the power play in addition to contributing two assists. Joe Thornton also had a goal and two helpers for the Sharks, who dominated much of the contest and opened up a 5-0 lead early in the third period.
The victory did come with a cost, however, as Sharks defenseman Dan Boyle was carried off the ice in a stretcher after being checked from behind by Blues center Maxim Lapierre in the first period.
Vladimir Tarasenko scored for a fourth straight outing for the previously undefeated Blues, who had opened the 2013-14 campaign with four straight home triumphs. Roman Polak accounted for St. Louis' other goal.
Blues goaltender Jaroslav Halak was pulled after two periods upon allowing four goals on 26 shots.
"They came in and played the right way. We didn't, and we paid for it," Blues head coach Ken Hitchcock said.
The clash between the two surging clubs was marred by an ugly incident 5:22 in, when Lapierre drove his stick into Boyle's upper back and sent him face- first into the glass. The veteran defenseman laid motionless on the ice for several minutes prior to being carted off and transported to a local hospital, though reports indicated he was alert and had movement in all his extremities.
Lapierre's hit triggered a fracas between several players on both sides, with St. Louis' Ryan Reaves and the Sharks' Matt Pelech each receiving game misconducts in addition to Lapierre.
San Jose was awarded an extended power play after order was restored, and cashed in when Couture rocketed a rising shot over Halak's right shoulder midway through the first period after taking in Marleau's no-look pass.
"It's cliche, but your mind is thinking about Boyler. We knew we had to win for him," Couture said.
St. Louis' undisciplined ways continued following the goal, as Jay Bouwmeester was sent off for high sticking Sharks rookie Tomas Hertl just 18 seconds after the score. San Jose capitalized once again, with Pavelski beating Halak to the stick side with a drive while unpressured from the left circle.
The teams combined for 79 penalty minutes during the feisty opening frame. Though the chippiness would subside in the second, San Jose's dominance did not.
Tommy Wingels put in a hustling wraparound try 8:34 into the middle session to extend the lead to 3-0, and Halak let Scott Hannan's shot in transition go through the wickets later in the period to put the Blues in a greater hole.
Thornton made it a 5-0 game with just over five minutes elapsed in the third period by connecting off a centering feed from Hertl with Brian Elliott now between the pipes for St. Louis.
The Blues' two goals both came with under 13 minutes remaining. Tarasenko put in a rebound of Jaden Schwartz's attempt to finally get St. Louis on the board, and Polak one-timed a behind-the-net pass from Derek Roy with 7:32 to go to cut the deficit to 5-2.
Sharks netminder Antti Niemi had stopped all 16 chances he faced over the first two periods and finished with 25 saves.
Marleau put the finishing touches on the win with a power-play blast that got by a screened Elliott with 2:54 left to play.
Elliott had 11 saves on 13 shots after taking over ... The loss snapped a 10- game regular-season home winning streak for St. Louis since a 2-0 setback to Chicago on April 14 of last season ... The Blues entered the game with the league's best power play at 37.5 percent (6-for-16), but went 0-for-4 in such situations ... St. Louis has allowed seven goals on 14 power-play opportunities over its last three outings ... Couture (3G, 6A) and Marleau (5G, 3A) have notched at least one point in all six games this season ... Hannan's goal was only his 34th in 946 career NHL games and first since Feb. 21 of the 2011-12 season while with Calgary.