Dreadful start dooms Sharks in season’s most lopsided loss

SAN JOSE, CALIFORNIA – JANUARY 22: San Jose Sharks’ Tomas Hertl (48) and San Jose Sharks’ Alexander Barabanov (94) drive for a goal against Tampa Bay Lightning’s Fredrik Claesson (3) and Tampa Bay Lightning’s Brian Elliott (1) in the third period at the SAP Center in San Jose, Calif., on Saturday, Jan. 22, 2022. (Shae Hammond/Bay Area News Group)

SAN JOSE – Robbie Gould’s game-winning 45-yard field goal sailed through the uprights at Lambeau Field just moments before Sharks defenseman Jaycob Megna’s shot from the point found its way past Tampa Bay Lightning goalie Brian Elliott.

When the final score of the 49ers’ playoff game with the Green Bay Packers was shown on the SAP Center’s JumboTron, a 13-10 San Francisco win thanks to Gould’s heroics, the cheers from the announced crowd of 14,193 were almost as loud as those for Megna’s goal, or anything else the Sharks did Saturday night.

The Sharks had their worst first period at home this season, allowing four goals in the opening 12:32 in what turned into an embarrassing 7-1 home loss to the two-time defending Stanley Cup champion Lightning.

The Sharks allowed goals to Ross Colton, Steven Stamkos, Mathieu Joseph, and Corey Perry in the first period before coach Bob Boughner mercifully pulled goalie James Reimer for what was his shortest outing of the season.

Megna scored at the 16:40 mark of the first opening period to cut the Lightning’s lead to three,…

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