Sharks nip Penguins in SO

San Jose, CA ( - Tommy Wingels netted the winner in the eighth round of the shootout, and San Jose escaped with a 2-1 victory over Pittsburgh on Monday.

Both sides registered successful shots in the third round, then came up empty through the seventh. Wingels opened the final round with a backhander against Marc-Andre Fleury, then Steve Downie failed to solve Antti Niemi to end the contest.

"Guys were excited," said Wingels. "Maybe a win like that injects some life into our team. Let's keep going."

Matt Nieto tallied in regulation for the Sharks, who have won three of their last four. Niemi finished with 39 stops.

Sidney Crosby provided the lone marker for the Penguins, who were denied a clean California sweep but still finished a four-game road trip at 2-1-1. Fleury halted 29 shots.

"It's unfortunate," Crosby said. "We played a pretty good game and probably deserved better."

Despite killing off a Rob Scuderi minor late in the first period, the Pens yielded the game's first goal, to Nieto, with 57 seconds left before intermission.

Crosby tied the score at 7:22 of the third period on a rush up the right wing that culminated in a backhander from the right circle.

Wingels was sent off for shooting the puck over the glass with 27 seconds left in regulation, and the Sharks were lucky to keep playing.

Niemi made two saves on the kill, his best denying Crosby with a quick right pad stop at the end of the advantage. Derrick Pouliot then caught iron during the final seconds of the extra session on a shot from the right wing.

Game Notes

San Jose won its third shootout of the season and first since Oct. 28, breaking a string of four consecutive defeats in the game's final segment ... The Penguins haven't beaten the Sharks on the road since a 5-2 decision on Oct. 22, 1997 ... Both teams are off until Thursday, when San Jose hosts Nashville and Pittsburgh begins a three-game homestand against Edmonton.