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Penguins stave off Ducks' shooting barrage to win in shootout

| Saturday, March 8, 2014, 1:09 a.m.
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Ryan Getzlaf #of the Anaheim Ducks shoots wide on Marc-Andre Fleury of the Pittsburgh Penguins in overtime shootout giving the Penguins a 3-2 win at Honda Center on March 7, 2014 in Anaheim, California.
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The Penguins' Brandon Sutter celebrates his goal leading to a 3-2 win over the Ducks in a shootout Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
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Tanner Glass of the Pittsburgh Penguins reacts after a Ryan Getzlaf of the Anaheim Ducks miss resulting in a 3-2 win in overtime shootout at Honda Center on March 7, 2014 in Anaheim, California.
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The Penguins' Sidney Crosby reacts to his goal in the shootout against the Ducks on Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
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The Penguins' James Neal celebrates Deryk Engelland's goal to tie the score 1-1 against the Ducks during the first period Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
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The Penguins' Tanner Glass and the Ducks' Patrick Maroon fight during the first period Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury (29) blocks the puck with Ducks right winger Jakob Silfverberg (33) at right in the second period Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
Ducks right winger Jakob Silfverberg (33) and Penguins defenseman Olli Maata (3) and goalie Marc-Andre Fleury (29) skate in the second period Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
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The Penguins' James Neal carries the puck and another stick during the second period against the Ducks on Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
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The Penguins' James Neal and Saku Koivu of the Anaheim Ducks fall to the ice during the second period Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
Ducks right winger Corey Perry (10) scores and leaps over Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury (29) with defenseman Olli Maata (3) in the first period Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
Ducks left winger Patrick Maroon (62) and Penguins left winger Tanner Glass (15) fight, each drawing a five-minute penalty, in the first period Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
Ducks right winger Corey Perry (10) leaps over Penguins goalie Marc-Andre Fleury (29) as Perry scores during the first period Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm (left) and Penguins center Marcel Goc tangle in the first period Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
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The Ducks' Corey Perry celebrates his goal with Ben Lovejoy and Daniel Winnikto against the Penguins on Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
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The Penguins' Marc-Andre Fleury makes a save as the Ducks' Corey Perry and Kyle Palmieri look for a rebound during the first period Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
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The Ducks' Rickard Rakell is knocked to the ice by the Penguins' Brooks Orpik during the first period Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
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The Penguins' Marc-Andre Fleury laughs after a save during a shootout against the Ducks on Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.
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The Ducks' Jonas Hiller reacts to a goal by the Penguins' Brandon Sutter in a shootout Friday, March 7, 2014, in Anaheim, Calif.

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Just when things looked their most bleak, the Penguins emerged with perhaps their grittiest win of the season.

Badly outshot most of the game against another Western Conference power, the Penguins barely kept pace with the Anaheim Ducks for most of the evening before mustering a 3-2 shootout victory.

“We were good late in the game,” center Sidney Crosby said. “We didn't generate a lot early, but we sure did late.”

Evgeni Malkin's goal evened the game midway through the third period. Brandon Sutter scored the shootout winner.

Crosby had a breakaway in overtime but was denied by Anaheim goalie Jonas Hiller. He scored in the shootout.

The Penguins were outshot 31-17, but goalie Marc-Andre Fleury kept them in the game.

“It was a carryover from last night,” defenseman Brooks Orpik said, referencing the Penguins' 5-3 loss Thursday in San Jose. “A lot of guys said their legs didn't feel too good. But you've just got to grind your way through it, and that's what we did. I don't know if we were deserving of a point or of a win, but when you're going back-to-back against two teams like this, you take it.”

For a team humbled during the final two periods in San Jose on Thursday, the Penguins didn't come out with much jump against the Ducks.

Anaheim outclassed the Penguins early and often, taking the lead on Corey Perry's goal 3:54 into the game.

“We got a lot of work early on our defensive zone coverage,” Orpik said with a smile.

Although Deryk Engelland's sixth goal of the season — he scored on the Penguins' first shot at the 7:47 mark of the first period — evened the game, the Ducks outpaced the Penguins for most of the rest of the game.

“Bit of a slow start,” Fleury said.

Anaheim had nine scoring chances in the first period. The Penguins had one.

The Ducks had a 12-3 shot advantage over the Penguins, who, similar to Thursday night, were sloppy with the puck. They had eight turnovers in the first period, including two apiece from Crosby and Chris Kunitz.

Midway through the second period, the Penguins were being outshot 19-4.

Then, something changed.

“We just stayed positive in here,” Sutter said.

The third period and overtime saw the Penguins on the attack.

Though they couldn't generate much early, they skated fast, played more physical and dictated play in the final 20 minutes.

In overtime, only Hiller's strong work kept the Penguins from clinching the victory before a shootout.

“Obviously, we didn't play very well in the first period,” right winger Craig Adams said. “We let them take it to us. We were definitely on our heels. But we found a way to keep the puck out of our net, and as the game went on, we got better and better.”

The Penguins are taking Saturday off in Southern California before traveling to Washington for the start of back-to-back games with the Capitals on Monday and Tuesday. Another set of back-to-back games — this time against the Flyers — await next weekend.

“This is a big week ahead of us,” Orpik said. “We need to keep getting better.”

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