Vancouver, BC (Sports Network) - Dan Boyle scored the game winner in the third period as the San Jose Sharks took a 3-1 win over the Vancouver Canucks in Game 1 of this Western Conference quarterfinal series.
Logan Couture added a goal and an assist, Patrick Marleau scored and Joe Pavelski gave two helpers for the sixth-seeded Sharks, who are in the playoffs for a ninth straight season, but are still looking for their first appearance in the Stanley Cup Finals.
Antti Niemi made 29 saves for San Jose, which was defeated in five games in the opening round last season by St. Louis.
Kevin Bieksa scored the lone goal of the game for the Canucks, who are in the playoffs as the third seed after winning the Northwest Division for a fifth straight season.
Vancouver lost to the Los Angeles Kings in the opening round last season.
Roberto Luongo got the start in net and allowed all three goals on 28 shots. He spent much of the season as the backup to Cory Schneider, who is back in the lineup after an undisclosed injury kept him sidelined for the final two games of the regular season.
Game 2 of this best-of-seven series is set for Friday night in Vancouver.