HOCKEY

Sabres end Blues streak at seven

In Buffalo, the Sabres won their second game in two nights, and handed the St Louis Blues their first loss after a seven-game win streak, in a 6-2 win.

Jeff Skinner and Jack Quinn each scored a double for the Sabres.

“I think for me, when guys have success, it’s because the line is playing well or the team is playing well,” Skinner said. “I think the last two games we’ve played well as a team and our line [with Tage Thompson and Alex Tuch] has been clicking pretty well. A couple of them have been on the power play, so when our power play’s clicking, when guys are playing well and guys are sort of feeding off each other, that kind of thing happen, and I think you just try and keep it going as a group.”

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen made 34 saves in the Sabres win.

“He’s progressed from last year to this year,” Buffalo coach Don Granato said of Luukkonen. “He looks like a different athlete. … Obviously he’s gained the wisdom of experience playing more games and more minutes in Rochester [in the American Hockey League]. He’s used those as opportunities to be better each time he’s come back up here.”

Buffalo improved to 9-11-0.

Pavel Buchnevich scored for the Blues to tie the game, 1-1, in the second period; Brayden Schenn hit for the Blues other goal when the game had gotten out of hand at 5-1 in the third period.

“I think we didn’t play our game at all, what we’ve been doing in the past seven,” Schenn said. “We probably thought we would come here, and we were feeling it a little bit, and maybe thought the game was easier than it is. There’s no guarantee wins in this league, and we turned over the puck too much and fed into their offense and their highly skilled and dynamic young guys, and they took it to us tonight.”

St Louis dropped to 10-9-0.

Dylan Cozens started a three-goal second period for the Sabres, he gave them a 2-1 lead early in the frame.

“We got squeezed off there and we’ve got to make a better play than that,” St. Louis coach Craig Berube said. “And then, you know, we got to reload harder. And we didn’t because of a turnover. And we can’t change on the play. We’ve got to read better. We made bad reads tonight.”

Victor Olofsson  and Skinner scored power play goals to get the Sabres a 4=1 lead by the end of the second.

“When we see him with that emotional energy just bursting out, and I usually get a warning from the officials, and there’s a lot of beaking going back to the opposing bench, you know he’s on his game,” Granato said. “That’s when he’s at his best. He’s fully engaged, and his competitiveness just rises in those situations.”

Quinn scored his two goals in the third period to get the Sabres to a 6-1 lead before St Louis’ Schenn  scored for the 6-2 final.

“We didn’t check hard enough,” Berube said. “They’ve got some real good skill over there and they exposed us with it tonight, like beating our guys one on one. It happened too many times tonight. Our penalty kill made two mistakes on it near our net, where we shouldn’t make mistakes on it when we know where we’re supposed to be, and that’s the game for me.”

Jordan Binnington made 26 saves in the Blues loss.



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