Sharks Need To Rebound Tonight Against Oilers

(Sports Network) - The Oilers hope a clutch goal by rookie Taylor Hall last time out got their home game back on track, but a visit from the Sharks could squash that momentum before it really gets started.

Edmonton, seeking back-to-back wins for the first time since the season's opening week, tries to avoid a sixth loss in its last seven games at Rexall Place when facing San Jose.

The Oilers have lost 15 of 19 since beginning the season with consecutive home wins over the Flames and Panthers on Oct. 7 and 10, respectively, including a 0-6 drought at home prior to Thursday's 3-2 victory over the Avalanche.

A pair of rookies teamed up to give Edmonton the victory as Jordan Eberle set up Hall's goal that came with just 29 seconds left in regulation. Hall, the top pick of the 2010 draft, picked up his fifth tally of the season and first game-winning goal of his career.

"I just tried to find a soft spot in front of the net and [Eberle] found me," Hall said after helping his team win for the second time in three games after an 0-4-2 skid.

Gilbert Brule and Andrew Cogliano scored goals 2:11 apart in the first period, but Edmonton and goaltender Martin Gerber could not make the early lead stand.

Gerber, who played in Russia last season, was making his Oilers debut and first NHL start since April 11, 2009. He ended with 35 saves.

Devan Dubnyk had made three straight starts since Nikolai Khabibulin suffered a groin injury on Nov 17. Dubnyk is just 1-1-3 with a 3.11 goals-against average this year and has split two career meetings with the Sharks while posting a 2.51 GAA. Gerber is 3-3-1 with a 2.35 GAA against them.

The Oilers dropped a 6-1 home test to the Sharks on Oct. 23, their seventh loss in the last eight meetings in the series. Eberle had Edmonton's lone goal and Khabibulin made 28 saves while letting in all six goals.

Edmonton might be catching San Jose at the right time as the Sharks have lost six in a row on the road and haven't won as the guest since the earlier win over the Oilers.

Dany Heatley, who had a goal and an assist versus the Oilers, notched his team's lone goal in the first period in last night's 6-1 setback in Vancouver.

San Jose, which is 1-2-2 over its last five games overall, got just 26 saves on 32 shots from Antti Niemi.

"Just when you think you've turned the corner, you see the group show up -- the exact same group that played the other night and did it right most of the night -- we just had no success tonight playing the way we executed," Sharks coach Todd McLellan told NHL.com.

The Sharks are 3-4-2 on the road this season and after returning home to face the Red Wings on Tuesday, they hit the road for another five straight.

Scott Nichol did not play last night after getting hit above the left eye by a puck during morning skate, while Devin Setoguchi left the game in the first period with an undisclosed injury.

Niemi has won his only career start versus the Oilers, making 16 saves on 19 shots, while Antero Niittymaki is 1-1-0 with a 2.02 GAA in two starts, making 21 saves in the earlier victory this season.

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