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The Journal Gazette

Friday, April 05, 2013 9:55 pm

Sabres rally for 4-2 win over Senators

By JOHN WAWROWAP Sports Writer

Brian Flynn and Jochen Hecht scored third-period goals 12 seconds apart, and the Buffalo Sabres rallied to beat the Ottawa Senators 4-2 on Friday night.

Steve Ott and Luke Adam also scored for Buffalo, and Ryan Miller stopped 35 shots. Defensemen Adam Pardy and Mike Weber each had two assists for the rebuilding Sabres, who are still trying to make a late push for a playoff spot.

Buffalo (15-17-6), now 12th in the Eastern Conference, was coming off a 4-1 victory at Pittsburgh on Tuesday that snapped the Penguins' 15-game winning streak.

Marc Methot and Eric Gryba scored for the Senators, who have lost three straight in regulation for the first time this season. Mika Zibanejad had two assists for Ottawa (19-12-6).

After Gryba put the Senators up 2-1 at 1:41 of the third period, the Sabres responded with three straight goals.

Ott, parked in front, deflected in Mark Pysyk's shot from the left boards to tie it at 3:15.

Flynn scored the go-ahead goal with 5:23 remaining. Weber started the play when his shot from the right point went wide of the net. Hecht got to the puck and fed a no-look pass through the crease to Flynn, who snapped a shot into the open side while goalie Robin Lehner was looking the other way.

Hecht sealed the win by driving up the left wing. He outmuscled Kyle Turris, stopped, spun around in the circle, and backhanded in a shot that beat Lehner through the legs.

This was the first game for both teams since they shook up their rosters before the NHL trade deadline on Wednesday.

Rookie center Cory Conacher made his debut for the Senators after he was acquired in the trade that sent goalie Ben Bishop to Tampa Bay. Conacher, second in the NHL rookie scoring race with 24 points, immediately became Ottawa's leading scorer this season upon his arrival.

The Sabres, meanwhile, took the ice without former captain Jason Pominville, who was dealt to the Minnesota Wild for two prospects and first- and second-round draft picks.

Buffalo is in rebuilding mode having acquired seven draft picks - including three second-round selections over the next three years - in completing four trades since March 15.

NOTES: It was a homecoming for Conacher, who is from Dunnvillle, Ontario, about 40 miles west of Buffalo, and played at Buffalo's Canisius College. ... Sabres 2012 third-round pick F Justin Key was signed by AHL Rochester, to an amateur tryout. Key had just completed his junior season with Saginaw of the Ontario Hockey League. ... The Senators are two games into a seven-game trip that ends at Boston on April 15. ... With Pominville gone, the Sabres will close the season without a captain. Ott was elevated to a third assistant captain. ... In stopping his 12th shot of the game 22 seconds into the second period, Miller passed Dominik Hasek to take over the franchise lead with 13,309 career saves.