Connolly, Lalime help Sabres jolt Coyotes

BUFFALO, New York (Ticker) — Tim Connolly scored a pair of
goals and set up two others and Patrick Lalime made 29 saves as
the Buffalo Sabres posted a 5-1 victory over the Phoenix Coyotes
on Friday.

Defenseman Andrej Sekera recorded a goal and an assist and Jason
Pominville and Drew Stafford netted power-play tallies for the
Sabres, who have won two in a row after suffering a three-game
losing streak.

Filling in for the injured Ryan Miller, Lalime went 0-2-1 in
three starts despite allowing only six goals prior to shining in
a 5-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday, when he
notched his first win since December 13.

Since breaking that 0-5-1 skid, the 34-year-old has turned aside
67 of 69 shots he has faced in the last two contests.

Newly acquired Matthew Lombardi scored a power-play goal for
Phoenix, which had snapped a three-game losing streak with a 2-1
victory over the Eastern Conference-leading Boston Bruins on

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Connolly opened the scoring at 7:07 of the first period and
Sekera collected his third tally of the season 78 seconds later,
accepting a feed from Connolly and firing a hard slap shot from
the high slot that sailed by Ilya Bryzgalov.

With 5:43 remaining in the second, Connolly converted a
power-play goal for his 13th goal of the season and a 3-0 lead.

Lombardi, who was traded along with Brandon Prust and a draft
pick from Calgary for Olli Jokinen prior to Wednesday’s NHL
trade deadline, cut the deficit at 6:52 of the third to spoil
Lalime’s shutout bid.

Buffalo ballooned its advantage when Pominville and Stafford
scored power-play goals in a 37-second span late in the session.

Bryzgalov finished with 26 saves for the Coyotes, who fell for
the 13th time in 17 games since the All-Star break.