Nov 9, 9:57 PM EST

Blackhawks use big 1st period to beat Sharks 5-2


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CHICAGO (AP) -- Defensemen Trevor van Riemsdyk, Brent Seabrook and Niklas Hjalmarsson scored in the first period, and the Chicago Blackhawks beat the San Jose Sharks 5-2 on Sunday night.

Bryan Bickell added a big goal in the third as the Blackhawks stopped a three-game home losing streak. Corey Crawford made 32 saves, including a nice stop on Patrick Marleau with Chicago nursing a one-goal lead with 7:30 left.

Joe Pavelski had two goals for San Jose, which was coming off a 5-3 victory at Dallas on Saturday night. The Sharks' seven-game road trip continues on Tuesday night at Florida.

The Sharks trailed 3-2 after two periods and had a chance to tie the game when David Rundblad was sent off for holding at 9:06 of the third. But the Blackhawks killed off the penalty, and Bickell put it away with his second goal of the season with 3:42 remaining.

Jonathan Toews added an empty-netter with 1:57 left. The captain also had an assist on van Riemsdyk's first career NHL goal.

Antti Niemi finished with 32 stops for San Jose.

Chicago's scoring spree in the first started when Toews sent a faceoff back to van Riemsdyk, who blasted a slap shot by a screened Niemi 8 minutes into the game.

Seabrook extended the lead to 2-0 at 14:10 when he scored on a one-timer off a pass from Brad Richards. With the sellout crowd of 21,489 still celebrating Seabrook's third goal, Hjalmarsson used a nicely placed wrist shot to record his first goal of the season at 14:34.

It was the first time three defensemen scored in a single period for Chicago since Frantisek Kucera, Igor Kravchuk and Steve Smith scored in the third period of an 8-1 victory over Edmonton on Nov. 27, 1992.

The fast start also came with coach Joel Quenneville trying a couple of new defensive pairings. The 23-year-old van Riemsdyk played with two-time Norris Trophy winner Duncan Keith, and Seabrook, who struggled in Friday night's 3-2 loss to Washington, was alongside Rundblad.

San Jose bounced back quickly after Hjalmarsson's goal. Pavelski had a nice redirection on Justin Braun's slap shot, trimming Chicago's lead to 3-1 at 15:32, and the Sharks outplayed the Blackhawks for much of the second period.

San Jose center Joe Thornton was shaken up after Andrew Shaw hit him on his nose with his stick in the second period. But Thornton got his revenge after Shaw was sent off for high sticking, making a nice pass through the crease to set up Pavelski's seventh goal of the season at 4:51.

The Sharks then had a chance to tie it at 3, but Crawford made a right pad save on a breakaway for Barclay Goodrow with 8 minutes left in the second.

NOTES: F Daniel Carcillo (lower body) is skating on his own and could return during the Blackhawks' six-game road trip from Nov. 20-29. He was injured in the third period of Chicago's 3-2 loss at St. Louis on Oct. 25. ... San Jose scratched Fs John Scott and Tye McGinn and D Matt Irwin. ... Carcillo, F Patrick Sharp (lower body) and D Michal Rozsival were the scratches for Chicago. ... San Jose coach Todd McLelllan on C Tommy Wingels, a native of nearby Evanston: "Out of all our players, he's probably made the biggest jump over the last 60 games." ... James van Riemsdyk, Trevor's brother, also scored Saturday night in Toronto's 5-3 victory at Ottawa.

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Jay Cohen can be reached at http://www.twitter.com/jcohenap

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