for this game

Sharp, Blackhawks down Avalanche

Oct 21, 2011 - 4:10 AM
Denver, CO (Sports Network) - Patrick Sharp netted the game-winning goal in the third period, helping the Chicago Blackhawks earn a 3-1 win over the Colorado Avalanche at Pepsi Center.

Jonathan Toews scored and added an assist, Marian Hossa scored an empty-netter and Cory Crawford was excellent in goal, stopping 31-of-32 shots for Chicago, which has won back-to-back games.

Ryan O'Byrne scored the lone goal and Semyon Varlamov made 27 saves on 29 shots for Colorado, which had their five-game winning streak snapped.

Sharp put the 'Hawks into the lead for good at the 7:20 mark of the third period with some excellent puck pursuit. The winger brought the disc into the offensive zone on the right wing and fired a shot from the right circle that Varlamov saw all the way and kicked out of the crease, but he couldn't control the rebound and Sharp took the puck around behind the net to the left circle and fired a wrister past Varlamov, giving his team a 2-1 margin.

Late in the third, the Avs were given a chance to equalize when Brent Seabrook was called for tripping at 17:27, giving the Avalanche a late power play. With the extra man, Varlamov was called to the bench for the extra attacker, making it a 6-on-4, but Hossa was able to pop the puck into the empty net at 18:50 to seal the win.

"We weathered some storms early tonight," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said. "We were in their end in the first 10 minutes. Cory did not have to make many great saves but there were no rebounds. We had the right guys killing that penalty and were fortunate to get the empty-netter."

Chicago opened the scoring at 16:02 of the first stanza when Daniel Carcillo found Toews gliding through the slot with a clever pass from the left corner and the captain made no mistake, taking the puck on his backhand and roofing it on Varlomov to give his team a 1-0 lead.

Colorado fought back to tie it at one at the 15:27 mark of the second period when Matt Duchene fired a wrister from the left circle that deflected off the chest and glove of O'Byrne, who crashed the net and scored on the rebound.

"It was a good close game, they dominated play in the first half we seemed to dominate in the second half," O'Byrne said. "I don't venture that deep usually. Their forward was a little late getting back, I knew it was off my glove and I knew Toronto was going to say it was a good goal."

Game Notes

Colorado went 0-for-2 on the power play, but have gone 7-for-14 over its last four games after starting the season 0-for-10...O'Byrne's goal was his first tally since April 3, 2010 against the Buffalo Sabres -- a span of 77 games...The teams will meet again Saturday in Chicago to finish off the back end of a home-and-home series.