The Buffalo Sabres scored just ten seconds into the game, but it was their only goal of the night as they fell to the St. Louis Blues at home by a final score of 4-1.
Jaroslav Halak was nothing short of solid in net for the Blues (14-3-3), stopping 23 of 24 shots. Brendan Morrow scored two goals for St. Louis, and earned the first star of the game.
“I think our youth really showed tonight,” Sabres’ head coach Ted Nolan said. “This (St. Louis) is one of the better teams in the National Hockey League. We just gotta keep pushing forward here. We knew it was going to be tough… You could tell the difference between some of the younger players we have and some of the more mature players they have.”
Tyler Ennis scored the lone goal for Buffalo (5-17-1) and his fourth of the season. He also led his team with two penalties, including one that allowed St. Louis to score the go-ahead goal.
“We scored and we didn’t sustain it,” Ennis stated. “That’s another thing we need to learn, they’re a good team and we can’t sit back. We put ourselves in the box, myself included, and they capitalized and got the momentum.”
The Sabres got off to a quick start, scoring the first goal of the game just ten seconds after puck drop. Ville Leino made a heads-up play on the forecheck and found Tyler Ennis crashing the net for an easy tip-in past Blues’ netminder Jaroslav Halak.
Buffalo’s lead was short lived as St. Louis got on the board less than a minute later. Chris Stewart made a beautiful behind-the-back pass to find Brenden Morrow in front of Ryan Miller to tie the game at 1:09.
The Sabres got into penalty trouble late in the period and allowed St. Louis to take the 2-1 lead on the man-up advantage. Vladimir Tarasenko found a rebound on the Blues’ rush and easily buried it past Miller with only 36 seconds left on the clock.
St. Louis extended their lead to two at 14:09 into the second period. Stewart again found Morrow open in front of the Sabres net, and Morrow’s quick release was enough to beat Miller on the high-side.
The Sabres outhit the Blues 33-17, but were not able to gain any momentum on the offensive side of the puck despite several scoring chances.
The Blues would make it 4-1 in the third off the stick of Magnus Paajarvi. Traffic in front of the Sabres’ net allowed Paajarvi’s shot from the point to find its way past Miller for the final tally of the night.
The Sabres will look to bounce back on the road this Thursday against the surging Philadelphia Flyers.