SAN JOSE, Calif. -- Mired in a goal-scoring drought, Devin Setoguchi went back to an old trick from junior hockey that paid off once again.
"I did it once in junior when I was 18-years old and hadn't scored a goal in a while," Setoguchi said. "I did it and scored two goals that night. So it's kind of weird. ... It's one of those things hockey players try to switch things up when they haven't gone well in a while."
Despite that success, San Jose has struggled to get production outside of its top line of Marleau, Thornton and Dany Heatley. The Sharks went six games without a goal from any other forward until Setoguchi broke through with two to snap a nine-game goal drought. He had eight shots overall, tied for the second most in his career.
"It was just a matter of time until he got scoring again," Thornton said. "For him to score two tonight was a huge help for us. Just a big smile from the bench from all of us."
The Oilers, who have been battling a flu bug the past week, have lost seven straight and 14 of 15 overall.
"We're not exactly on fire when we had everybody healthy so things haven't changed much," Edmonton captain Ethan Moreau said. "They have better offensive players that capitalized and score more goals than us. The game was played pretty evenly but they just have high-end guys that win games for them. To beat these guys you almost to play a perfect game for us to beat them."
Sharks coach Todd McLellan shook up his lines to try to get more balanced scoring, moving Manny Malhotra to the second line with Setoguchi and Joe Pavelski, and dropping Ryane Clowe down to a line with Scott Nichol and Jed Ortmeyer.
The revamped second line delivered with the goals by Setoguchi on both sides of the first intermission. After Thornton drew a penalty from Dustin Penner to give the Sharks their first power play, Setoguchi made the Oilers pay with a wrist shot from the circle that beat rookie goalie Devan Dubnyk with 1:16 remaining in the first period.
Then just 22 seconds into the second period, Setoguchi knocked home Pavelski's rebound of a shot by to make it 3-1.
"It was nice to get rewarded," Setoguchi said. "Now I have to keep going forward and not take any steps and keep going in the right direction."
Thornton's goal late in the period off a perfect centering pass from Douglas Murray put the game out of reach.
That helped Greiss earn his fifth win of the season. He had not started a game since beating Phoenix in a shootout on Dec. 31. He had only played briefly since then, replacing Evgeni Nabokov late in a blowout loss to Los Angeles on Jan. 4.
"Thomas doesn't get to play often but when he does he always seems to come up with a really good game," McLellan said. "Once again, he seemed to play well."
The Oilers also went with their backup goalie as Dubnyk made the fourth start of his career. He has given up 18 goals in those four starts and is still looking for his first career win.
Marleau got the Sharks on the board first when his centering pass from the corner got caught in the skates of Dubnyk and trickled over the goal line.
"It's not good for our goaltenders to have easily missed plays there," coach Pat Quinn said. "It hurts the concentration. It hurts confidence and it builds fear. And if you play with a little bit of fear you are really in trouble."
|Patrick Marleau continues his scoring pace, with seven goals in the last eight games. (AP)|
|San Jose (31-10-8) «||2||2||0||4|
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|03:51||Patrick Marleau (32), Wrist Shot. Assist: Heatley, Thornton|
|15:58||Denis Grebeshkov (5), Snap Shot. Assist: Gagner, Cogliano|
|18:44||Power Play - Devin Setoguchi (11), Slap Shot. Assist: Malhotra, Clowe|
|22.0||Devin Setoguchi (12), Wrist Shot. Assist: Pavelski, Malhotra|
|15:36||Joe Thornton (13), Tip-In. Assist: Murray, Marleau|
|09:43||Short - Patrick O'Sullivan (10), Wrist Shot, Unassisted.|
|17:50||Penner, 2 min, High-Sticking|
|12:48||Ferriero, 2 min, Delay of Game - Puck Over Glass|
|54.0||Souray, 2 min, Slashing|
|08:40||Gagner, 2 min, Hooking|
|Shots On Goal|
|Attendance - 17562|
|Referees - Dennis LaRue, Tim Peel|
|Linesmen - Darren Gibbs, Scott Cherrey|