NHL Game Summary - Montreal at Buffalo
(Wednesday, April 12th)
Final Score: Buffalo 3, Montreal 1
Buffalo, NY (Sports Network) - Tim Connolly tallied a goal and an assist as the Buffalo Sabres defeated the Montreal Canadiens, 3-1, at HSBC Arena.
Taylor Pyatt and Daniel Briere added a goal apiece and Ryan Miller made 27 saves for Buffalo, which has won four of its last five games. Maxim Afinogenov notched two assists for the Sabres, who now have 104 points and are firmly entrenched as the fourth-seed in the Eastern Conference.
The Sabres are seven points ahead of No. 5 Philadelphia, which has four games left.
Sheldon Souray scored the Habs' lone goal and Cristobal Huet stopped 31 shots for Montreal, which has lost two of three following an eight-game winning streak. The Canadiens have 91 points, two points ahead of eighth-seeded Tampa Bay and four points behind sixth-seed New Jersey.
Montreal is six points up on ninth-place Atlanta, which has four games left.
Buffalo drew first blood 2:51 into the first period after Pyatt beat Huet glove side after he tipped a shot from the point for his sixth tally of the season to give the Sabres a 1-0 lead.
The Sabres upped their lead with 1:34 left in the opening frame when Connolly beat Huet with a one timer from the slot off a pass from Toni Lydman, who was below the left circle at the side of the net.
Montreal cut its deficit in half 5:34 into the middle frame when Souray beat Miller glove side top shelf with a wrister from the left point to make it 2-1.
Buffalo, however, regained its two-goal advantage 2:02 into the final frame while on the power play after Briere deked Souray before beating Huet glove side with a shot along the ice to push the Sabres' lead to 3-1.
Montreal pulled Huet with about a minute left in the contest and had a two-man advantage for 44 seconds after Pyatt was called for hooking. The Sabres kept Montreal at bay, however, as Miller made two big saves in the final 30 seconds to seal the win.
Montreal center Chris Higgins had his four-game goal-scoring streak snapped...Habs right wing Alexei Kovalev had his three-game goal-scoring streak against Buffalo halted...Montreal has lost nine of its last 11 at Buffalo....The Sabres and Canadiens conclude their season series Saturday at Montreal... Afinogenov has a five-game point streak with two goals and nine assists in those games.
04/12 22:04:32 ET