Sabres 3, Maple Leafs 2, OT

BY foxsports • December 21, 2009

Derek Roy scored 3:35 into overtime and Ryan Miller made 34 saves to lead the Buffalo Sabres to a 3-2 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Monday night.

After winning an offensive-zone faceoff and an ensuing race to the loose puck, Sabres center Jochen Hecht passed to Roy in front, who deked and then went to his backhand to beat Maple Leafs goalie Jonas Gustavsson.

Nathan Paetsch, with his first goal of the season, and Hecht scored in regulation time for the Sabres.

Sabres defenseman Steve Montador added two assists.

The win was the sixth in eight games for the Northeast Division-leading Sabres.

Rookie forward Viktor Stalberg, with his second goal in three games since being recalled from the American Hockey League, and Ian White replied for Toronto. The Maple Leafs lost for the third time in four games.

Once again, the Sabres relied heavily on Miller, who leads the NHL in goals-against average and save percentage and is the leading candidate to be the United States' starting goalie at the Olympics.

He stopped every puck he saw as both Stalberg's and White's goals came on crease-crashing deflections. The win was Miller's ninth in his past 10 games against the Maple Leafs.

Gustavsson, coming off the first shutout of his career in a 2-0 win over Boston on Saturday, stopped 27 of 30 shots.

The Sabres led 1-0 after a frantic first period in which both teams fired 13 shots and had several good scoring chances. Gustavsson made a nice save on Buffalo left winger Clarke MacArthur in the early going, while Miller denied Leafs right wing Lee Stempniak on a short-handed breakaway in the later stages of the opening period.

Stalberg and White scored goals in the second period to give Toronto a 2-1 edge heading into the third, but the Leafs couldn't fend off the Sabres - or get another puck past Miller.

Hecht got the Sabres even at 12:59 of the third period when he collected a loose puck in the slot and lifted a backhand over Gustavsson to make it 2-2 and set the stage for overtime.

Paetsch, skating in just his eighth game of the season, opened the scoring at 6:11 of the first period. Buffalo left wing Matt Ellis won a battle along the boards and slid the puck to Paetsch, who swept a low wrist shot that beat Gustavsson through the legs.

The goal was Paetsch's first since Feb. 6, 2009, and just his seventh in 154 career NHL games.

Notes: Buffalo was 0 for 1 on the power play, while Toronto didn't have a single man advantage. ... Buffalo left winger and leading goal scorer Thomas Vanek sat out a second consecutive game nursing an abdominal injury.



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