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Connolly and Miller lead Sabres to 3-1 win over Hurricanes

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BUFFALO, N.Y. - Tim Connolly scored twice and Ryan Miller made 36 saves in the Buffalo Sabres' 3-1 win over Carolina on Saturday night that sent the Hurricanes to their fifth straight loss.

Teppo Numminen also scored for the Sabres, who won their second straight after a two-game losing streak.

Miller was solid in the third period when Carolina outshot the Sabres 19-5, and was helped in the second period when Hurricanes' forward Scott Walker hit the left post after pulling the puck around the sprawled goalie on a deke.

Ray Whitney scored for the Hurricanes, who are on their longest regulation losing streak since dropping the final six games of the 2002-03 season. Carolina played the final 2:48 with goalie Cam Ward pulled, but were unable to solve Miller.

Buffalo has won five in a row at home over Carolina since March 2006, outscoring the Hurricanes 22-4 in the last four games.

Ward, making his 11th consecutive start, made 23 saves. He has surrendered 13 goals in three games.

Whitney made it 3-1 with his 14th goal just 17 seconds into the third period, shoveling a loose puck between Miller's pads from in front.

With the Sabres leading 2-0, Connolly increased the advantage with 3:04 left in the second period, scoring his second of the night and fourth of the season. After getting to a loose puck inside the Carolina blue-line, Connolly skated to the edge of the left circle in the slot before snapping a shot over Ward's left shoulder.

Connolly opened the scoring eight minutes in, deflecting Toni Lydman's shot from the middle of the blue-line.

Numminen upped Buffalo's lead to 2-0 with his second of the season with 3 1/2 minutes left in the first. Numminen didn't play in the third period after getting hit in the face by a shot in the second.

Notes: Buffalo LW Thomas Vanek had two assists. ... The Sabres will begin a season-high, six-game trip Monday at Florida. They are in the midst of playing nine of 10 away from home. ... The Hurricanes are in a stretch of playing seven of eight on the road. ... Carolina C Eric Staal played in his 300th consecutive regular-season game. ... Numminen is the only Buffalo defenseman with more than one goal this season. ... The Hurricanes have allowed 23 goals during their skid, which followed a four-game winning streak.

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