Despite being held scoreless through two periods, the Buffalo Sabres were able to come back in third, and hold off the New Jersey Devils to win in a shootout. It took nine rounds, but Ville Leino was able to deliver the final blow to give Buffalo the 3-2 win.
Tyler Ennis scored both goals for Buffalo in regulation and netted one in the first round of the shootout. His second goal of the night marked a career-high 21 goals in one season.
Nathan Lieuwen remained poised in net for Buffalo, making 33 saves and several key stops in the shootout to earn his first NHL win for Buffalo.
“The future of goaltending in Buffalo is bright,” Drew Stafford stated. “It was nice to win for the fans and it was good the fans got so involved.”
The first period remained scoreless, with the Devils outshooting the Sabres 10-8. New Jersey finally got on the board at 8:16 into the second period. Dainius Zubrus deflected a shot past Nathan Lieuwen to give the Devils the 1-0 lead. Michael Ryder and Damien Brunner both assisted on the play.
Buffalo was finally able to get on the board in the early moments of the third period. On an offensive rush, Ville Leino found Tyler Ennis open on the wing which allowed him to fire a wrist shot past Cory Schneider at 1:39. Drew Stafford initiated the play from the point and earned the second assist on the goal.
The Sabres were able to take the lead on the powerplay shortly after their first goal at 4:41 into the third. Ennis wasted no time scoring his second goal of the night after receiving a cross-crease pass from Cody Hodgson. The play marked a career-high 21 goals in one season for Ennis. Drew Stafford was also credited for an assist on the play.
The game remained tied into overtime, and eventually into the shootout where the Sabres handed the Devils their eleventh shootout loss of the season. It took nine rounds before Ville Leino dealt the deciding blow for Buffalo. The Devils are 0-11 in shootouts this season.
The Sabres embark on a three game road trip, beginning this Thursday against the St. Louis Blues.
Tags: Buffalo Sabres