San Jose, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Carter Hutton made 35 saves for his first career shutout and the Nashville Predators beat the San Jose Sharks 3-0 on Saturday night for their sixth win in eight games.
Patric Hornqvist scored twice and assisted on Roman Josi's goal as Nashville followed up Friday's 5-2 win over Anaheim with another victory over a playoff- bound team.
"Every night is a big night for us," said Hornqvist. "As long as we have a chance, obviously our goal to make the playoffs is tough but as long as we have a chance it is something to work hard for."
The Sharks, their two-game winning streak snapped, missed a chance to pick up at least a point on West-leading St. Louis, which lost to Colorado earlier on Saturday and remains three points up on the Ducks and four ahead of San Jose.
The playoff-bound Sharks remained one point behind Anaheim for first place in the Pacific Division. They have three games left, starting with Wednesday's road test against Anaheim. The Ducks have five games remaining.
"It's the time of year where you can't have baggage," said Sharks coach Todd McLellan. "You can't carry things forward."
Antti Niemi gave up three goals on 24 shots and San Jose finished 0-3 against Nashville this season.
All three goals came in a span of less than 10 minutes in the second period.
Hornqvist scored on a rebound in the crease at 3:48 after Matt Cullen's shot was stopped, and he found the net again 5:11 later on a one-timer from the slot that beat Niemi glove-side, his 20th goal of the season.
The Predators took their 3-0 lead at 13:16 on Josi's 12th goal after he went strong to the net on a try that was initially stopped, then got through Niemi.