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Reinprecht gets hat trick in Avalanche's win

1/5/2003

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) -- Steve Reinprecht and Patrick Roy made it easy for Tony Granato to enjoy his return to San Jose.

Reinprecht scored three goals and Roy made 40 saves as the
Colorado Avalanche beat the Sharks 6-1 on Saturday night.

"We knew in the back of our minds it was an emotional game for
him,'' Reinprecht said. "It was also a big game for the team.''

Granato downplayed his return.

"We didn't come here for a visit,'' Granato said. "It was
great coming back but winning was important. Patty made the saves
when he had to and the guys finished their chances.''

Granato, 6-2-0-1 since replacing Bob Hartley as coach of the
Avalanche, spent the last six seasons with the Sharks, five as a
player and one as a broadcaster, before moving to Colorado.

Jeff Shantz, Dan Hinote and Rob Blake added goals to help the
Avalanche beat the Sharks for the fourth consecutive time and
seventh straight game in San Jose.

"Patrick stopped the rebounds,'' San Jose defenseman Dan
McGillis said. "He's a good goalie and he stopped a lot of pucks.
When we get those second opportunities we need to put them in the
net.''

Roy, who missed the previous game because of the flu, said he
felt better during practice Friday.

"It's just a matter of a few practices,'' he said. "My game
seems to be back on track.''

Derek Morris and Alex Tanguay each had two assists for the
Avalanche, 8-2-3 in their last 13 games against the Sharks.

Marco Sturm scored his 14th goal of the season for San Jose. The
Sharks, who took a season-high 41 shots, lost consecutive games for
the first time since Ron Wilson took over as coach Dec. 6.

"The difference in the game was Patrick Roy plain and simple,''
Wilson said. "He made all the key saves and we generated a lot of
offense.''

The Avalanche scored three goals in their first five shots.

Reinprecht tied it at 1 at 3:35 of the first period, Shantz made
it 2-1 with 6:49 left in the period, and Hinote scored with 3:57
remaining.

"It was all bounces,'' Reinprecht said. "You saw that the
first one went off Joe Sakic's thigh and then to me. The second one just hit my stick and went in.''

Rob Blake, who missed Colorado loss to Florida on Thursday night
because of back spasms, scored his seventh goal of the season early
in the second period.

Reinprecht added two goals in the third period for his second
career hat trick. He also had three goals against Atlanta on April
3.

"It's tough when you think you play OK,'' Sharks right wing
Teemu Selanne said. "We had 40 shots so we know something was
right. We just couldn't get on the board and that was
frustrating.''

Game notes
Roy is 23-6-4 in his career against the Sharks. ...
Colorado C Peter Forsberg played in his 500th game. ... Selanne
assisted on Sturm's goal, his 100th point as a Shark. ... The
Sharks have allowed 11 power-play goals in their last eight games
and failed to score on 25 straight power-play opportunities. ...
Sharks RW Owen Nolan has not had a point in seven of his last eight
games.