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game recap

Sabres rally late, then beat Lightning 3-2 in shootout

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:51 AM

NHL.com

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Sabres rally late, then beat Lightning 3-2 in shootout
Buffalo Sabres 3, Tampa Bay Lightning 2

Drew Stafford got one point for the Buffalo Sabres. Tyler Myers and Ryan Miller brought home the other.

Stafford's goal with 16.1 seconds left in regulation forced overtime and Myers scored the only goal of the shootout in the sixth round as the Sabres beat the Tampa Bay Lightning 3-2 on Saturday night.

Miller made 24 saves in regulation and overtime, then stopped all six Lightning shooters in the shootout. Myers, a rookie defenseman who was Buffalo's top pick in the 2008 Entry Draft, won it by beating Mike Smith after some slick stickhandling.

"I guess the coaches felt something," the 6-foot-8 rookie defenseman said. "I'm happy I backed them up on it."

Miller was on the bench for an extra attacker when Stafford beat Smith to get the Sabres even.

"We were able to get the lucky bounce there at the end," Stafford said.

Vincent Lecavalier stopped a personal 15-game goal-scoring drought and Steven Stamkos scored early in the third period for TampaBay, which has lost all three shootouts this season.

"It's really getting frustrating, the shootout," Lightning coach Rick Tocchet said. "This team is still learning how to win. That's a tough loss for us. You learn from your mistakes and move on."

Lecavalier just missed scoring in the fourth round.

"I got a little fortunate," said Miller, now 6-0-1 this season. "I got enough of it to knock it into the crossbar. It had all the makings of going into the net. It was high enough on the crossbar to stay out."

Lecavalier put the Lightning ahead 1-0 on a backhand rebound with :00.6 left in the first period. It was the TampaBay captain's first goal since March 17 against Toronto.

Mike Grier tied it with his 150th career goal, beating Smith from in-close with 44.9 seconds to go in the second period. Tim Kennedy set up the goal by stealing the puck from rookie defenseman Victor Hedman in the TampaBay zone

TampaBay went up 2-1 at 4:26 of the third when Stamkos stole the puck behind the Buffalo net and scored on a wraparound. He has seven goals over his last seven games.

"Once we got that lead, we kept pressing and didn't give them much," Stamkos said. "They throw pucks to the net and they seem to find their way in. It's frustrating."

Stamkos has scored a goal in three straight games. He also has five goals and seven points during a five-game point streak.

Martin St. Louis assisted on Lecavalier's goal and has started the season with a nine-game points streak. The right wing has 10 assists and 13 points.

"It's hard to win in this league," Tocchet said. "Nothing comes easy. We've got to keep pounding that into the guys."

--John Kreiser, NHL.com

Material from wire services and team media was used in this report

scoring summary
1st Period
19:59
TBL
Vincent Lecavalier (1) ASST: James Wright (1), Martin St. Louis (10)
1 - 0 TBL
2nd Period
19:14
BUF
Michael Grier (3) ASST: Tim Kennedy (3)
1 - 1 Tie
3rd Period
04:26
TBL
Steven Stamkos (7) ASST: NONE
2 - 1 TBL
19:43
BUF
Drew Stafford (3) ASST: Derek Roy (7), Craig Rivet (3)
2 - 2 Tie
OT Period
NONE
Shootout
RNDTBLBUFTOTAL
1S. Stamkos
D. Stafford
0 - 0
2R. Malone
J. Pominville
0 - 0
3A. Tanguay
T. Vanek
0 - 0
4V. Lecavalier
D. Roy
0 - 0
5M. Ohlund
T. Connolly
0 - 0
6M. St. Louis
T. Myers
0 - 1
penalty summary
1st Period
06:04
TBL
Kurtis Foster  Holding against  Patrick Kaleta
06:04
BUF
Patrick Kaleta  Diving against  Kurtis Foster
07:57
BUF
Tyler Myers  Holding against  Ryan Malone
2nd Period
01:38
TBL
Steven Stamkos  Hooking against  Derek Roy
05:40
BUF
Thomas Vanek  Holding the stick against  Kurtis Foster
10:29
TBL
Andrej Meszaros  Hooking against  Derek Roy
3rd Period
14:45
TBL
Mattias Ohlund  Cross checking against  Tim Connolly
OT Period
NONE
goalie stats
Ryan Miller
SA: 26TOI: 64:03
Saves: 24EV: 19 - 21
PIM: 0PP: 4 - 4
SV%: .923SH: 1 - 1
Mike Smith
SA: 32TOI: 65:00
Saves: 30EV: 25 - 27
PIM: 0PP: 5 - 5
SV%: .938SH: 0 - 0