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Avs miss chance to clinch Central title

San Jose, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - With a division title on the line, the Colorado Avalanche couldn't end their struggles in San Jose.

A third-period hat trick by Marty Havlat highlighted the Sharks' 5-1 win on Friday night.

The surprising Avalanche, who finished in the Western Conference basement last season, had a chance to clinch the Central Division crown with reeling St. Louis losing to Dallas.

Despite its 12th consecutive regular-season road defeat to the Sharks, Colorado remains in the driver's seat for its first division title since 2003.

04/12 00:58:43 ET