Play Fantasy Use your Fantasy skills to win Cash Prizes. Join or start a league today. Play Now
  • My Scores
  • Golf
  • NCAA FB
  • NHL
  • MLB
  • NFL

Toronto at Buffalo

Kotalik's late OT goal gives Sabres win over Maple Leafs

CBSSports.com wire reports
  •  

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Down by two goals heading into the third period, the Buffalo Sabres had the Toronto Maple Leafs right where they wanted them.

Ales Kotalik's power-play goal with 3.7 seconds left in overtime gave the Sabres a 5-4 come-from-behind win over Toronto on Monday night.

It's the first time this season the Sabres have erased a two-goal deficit. Last season, the Presidents' Trophy winners rallied from two goals down to win nine times, including a victory over Toronto in March when they were three goals behind in the third period.

"It's the strong mentality of this club," said Kotalik, whose slap shot from the left circle was stopped by Andrew Raycroft, but defenseman Bryan McCabe inadvertently knocked the puck into his own net to give the Sabres the dramatic victory. "We have a strong group in here. We never give up, and we believe in each other and work for each other."

Jason Pominville and Jochen Hecht had a goal and an assist each, and Adam Mair and Thomas Vanek also scored for Buffalo, which won its third straight game.

Jocelyn Thibault made 21 saves in his season debut with the Sabres.

Buffalo trailed 2-0 after two periods, and was being stymied by Raycroft. But when Mair made it 2-1 at 8:12 of the third, and Pominville tied it 37 seconds later, the momentum began to swing.

"I thought we played our best hockey once we got down by two goals," said Sabres center Tim Connolly, who had two assists. "We never gave up. We started to play desperate, play physical, and really get pucks to the net."

Buffalo peppered Raycroft with 19 shots in the third period, and four more in overtime.

For Toronto, it was the second straight game in which it blew a two-goal lead. The Maple Leafs were up by two Saturday before the Pittsburgh Penguins stormed back for a 6-4 win.

"What can you say about luck on my part?" McCabe said. "I tried to clear it ... it was on me. I certainly didn't mean to put it in the net."

Chad Kilger had two goals and an assist, Nik Antropov added one of each, and Simon Gamache also scored for the Maple Leafs, who have dropped three of four.

Raycroft, making his third start, finished with 37 saves.

"It doesn't feel too good right now," Toronto coach Paul Maurice said. "We don't have a lot of confidence in our defensive game right now, and it showed. We sat back, and that's the kiss of death, especially against a team that can wind up like that."

Gamache opened the scoring with his second goal of the season, netted with 4:27 left in the first period.

Antropov made it 2-0 at 5:56 of the second period with his fifth goal.

After Pominville tied it at 2 with 11 minutes left in the third, the Maple Leafs grabbed the lead back 82 seconds later after Kilger redirected a nifty pass from the right corner by Antropov.

After Vanek made it 3-3 with just less than seven minutes left in regulation, Kilger again gave the Maple Leafs the lead with his second of the game 35 seconds later.

Buffalo tied it on Hecht's goal with 3:33 left in regulation to send the game into overtime.

"We have that confidence that we can come back in any game," Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff said. "These games are interesting and exciting."

McCabe, however, wasn't thrilled with the outcome.

"We got into a river hockey game," he said. "They're a quick team. We've seen it before."

Notes

  • Toronto plays just two of its first 10 games on the road.
  • Sabres D Jaroslav Spacek left the game with 2:31 left in the third period with a shoulder injury after absorbing a check against the boards by Antropov. Ruff didn't know the extent of the injury.
  • Buffalo has won four of five against the Maple Leafs.
  • Antropov's goal stood up to a 30-second video review. He has scored in three straight games.
  • Maple Leafs RW John Pohl had a career-high three assists.
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
COMMENTS
Conversation powered by Livefyre
Buffalo's Jochen Hecht (right) celebrates his third-period goal with Jason Pominville. (AP)
Buffalo's Jochen Hecht (right) celebrates his third-period goal with Jason Pominville. (AP)

Scoreboard
Toronto (2-3-2)11204
Buffalo  (3-2-0) «00415
Three Stars
A. Kotalik
BUF


Goals: 1
Assist(s): 0
T. Connolly
BUF


Goals: 0
Assist(s): 2
C. Kilger
TOR


Goals: 2
Assist(s): 1
Scoring Summary
1ST PERIOD
15:33Simon Gamache (2), Slap Shot. Assist: John Pohl, Matt Stajan
2ND PERIOD
05:56Nik Antropov (5), Wrist Shot. Assist: Chad Kilger, John Pohl
3RD PERIOD
08:12Adam Mair (2), Slap Shot. Assist: Derek Roy, Daniel Paille
08:49Jason Pominville (3), Wrist Shot. Assist: Tim Connolly, Jochen Hecht
10:11Chad Kilger (1), Snap Shot. Assist: Nik Antropov, John Pohl
13:02Thomas Vanek (2), Backhand Shot. Assist: Drew Stafford, Derek Roy
13:37Chad Kilger (2), Wrist Shot. Assist: Darcy Tucker
16:27Jochen Hecht (2), Wrist Shot. Assist: Tim Connolly, Jason Pominville
OT
04:56Power Play - Ales Kotalik (2), Slap Shot, Unassisted.
Penalty Summary
1ST PERIOD
12:11White, 2 min, Hooking
17:05Kubina, 2 min, Tripping
19:44Paille, 2 min, Interference with goal tender.
2ND PERIOD
02:48Gamache, 2 min, Tripping
06:11Sundin, 2 min, Holding
07:13Stajan, 2 min, Holding
07:13Gaustad, 2 min, Diving
12:41Kotalik, 2 min, Hooking
18:00Roy, 2 min, Unsportsmanlike Conduct
3RD PERIOD
17:29Antropov, 2 min, Boarding
OT
03:15Kubina, 2 min, Tripping
SHOTS ON GOAL
 123T
Toronto108523
Buffalo9101938
Goalies
GoalieMINSSGA
Andrew Raycroft 64:55375
Jocelyn Thibault 64:54214
Game Information
Attendance - 18217
Referees - Dennis LaRue, Kelly Sutherland
Linesmen - Brian Murphy, Mark Pare
 
Other Games
Det 3 Final
Ana 6
SJ 4 Final
Van 2