Schneider makes 25 saves in shutout, Devils beat Sabres 2-0
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) Cory Schneider shook off a poor performance in his last outing to give the New Jersey Devils a shutout victory.
Schneider made 25 saves to earn his second shutout of the season, as the Devils beat the Buffalo Sabres 2-0 Tuesday night.
Schneider has allowed two goals or fewer in 16 of his last 19 starts, but was chased in the second period of Sunday's 4-0 loss to the New York Islanders after giving up his three goals in the first 28 minutes.
''It was nice to see Cory bounce back,'' Devils coach John Hynes said. ''He was terrific for us. Once again, he was a big reason why we were able to win the game.''
''It was a bounce-back for everybody,'' Schneider said. ''From me on out. Personally, I hold myself to a high standard and three goals in the first 30 minutes just isn't what I'm used to. It was important for me to not let it slide.''
Lee Stempniak and Jiri Tlusty scored for the Devils, who earned a point for the fifth time in their last six road games and improved to 6-0-2 against Atlantic Division teams this season.
''It's a huge win for us,'' Stempniak said. ''We didn't play our best against the Islanders. Came back and had a good response, stuck with it, weathered the storm at times and did enough to win.''
Adam Henrique returned to center the Devils' top line after missing two games with an upper-body injury, and had an assist on Stempniak's goal. Mike Cammalleri also had an assist, his team-leading 20th of the season.
''It's great to have him back,'' Stempniak said. ''He's a huge part of our team.''
Linus Ullmark made 19 saves for the Sabres, who had a two-game win streak snapped.
''We had a few opportunities,'' Sabres coach Dan Bylsma said. ''We missed the net with most of them, couldn't capitalize, couldn't put them in trouble.''
Buffalp put just 14 shots on goal before falling behind 2-0 early in the third period.
''In the second period, they kind of took the game to us in terms of where it was played and how it was played,'' Bylsma said. ''We got caught in some long situations playing D-zone. Eventually they capitalized on that situation.''
Stempniak slammed home a rebound for his eighth goal of the season to put the Devils up 1-0 with 2:33 remaining in the second period. Henrique fed Cammalleri for a slap shot from the right circle that Ullmark kicked away, and Stempniak beat Sabres defenseman Jake McCabe to the puck at the right edge of the crease.
The Devils killed off two penalties 2:27 apart earlier in the second period, allowing the Sabres just two shots on goal during the power plays. Buffalo went 0-3 on the power play for the second straight game.
''That's a huge key to the game,'' Sabres captain Brian Gionta said. ''It could be a turning point, and we didn't get any momentum out of it.''
Tlusty took advantage of a Buffalo turnover to make it 2-0 less than 5 minutes into the third period. Buffalo defenseman Zach Bogosian's attempt to clear the puck out of the zone bounced off the boards to Tlusty in the slot. Tlusty spun around and sent a slap shot over Ullmark's glove.
''I didn't see where it came form,'' Tlusty said. ''I just saw it bouncing around in the slot. I wasn't thinking about anything. I was just turning around and shooting it.''
It was Tlusty's second goal since Oct. 9. He has missed 12 of the Devils' 31 games with upper-body injuries.
Schneider made 11 of his saves in the third period, while the Devils did not put a shot on goal for over 10 minutes after Tlusty's goal.
NOTES: Hynes said F Tuomo Ruutu is set to return ''any day'' after missing 27 games with a broken foot. Hynes also said there is a good chance F Travis Zajac will return this weekend from an upper-body injury. … Bylsma said G Robin Lehner is still recovering from an ankle sprain sustained in the season-opener and will be out through the NHL Holiday Break next week. … Sabres F Cal O'Reilly played in his first NHL game since Feb. 15, 2012, and with his brother Ryan O'Reilly for the first time in his career. … The Devils scratched RW Brian O'Neill, LW Stefan Matteau and D Eric Gelinas. … LW Marcus Foligno and D Carlo Colaiacovo were scratched for Buffalo. … Ryan O'Reilly had an eight-game point streak snapped.