02/01 22:09 CST Noesen has goal, assist as Hurricanes rout Sabres 5-1
Noesen has goal, assist as Hurricanes rout Sabres 5-1
By MARK LUDWICZAK
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) --- Stefan Noesen had a goal and an assist to help lead the
Carolina Hurricanes to a 5-1 win over the Buffalo Sabres on Wednesday night.
Sebastian Aho, Brent Burns, Derek Stepan and Jordan Martinook also scored for
the Hurricanes, who have won seven games in a row. Antti Raanta made 29 saves.
Alex Tuch scored the lone goal for Buffalo. Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen made 29 saves.
"We've played pretty consistently," Carolina coach Rod Brind'Amour said. "Our
guys work really hard and that's the cornerstone of our group, contributions up
and down the lineup."
The Hurricanes completely dominated the Sabres out of the gates, taking control
of the game and jumping out to an early 3-0 lead.
"It felt like that was huge for us," Aho said. "It was almost the game right
Aho opened the scoring on the power play 2:35 into the game, finishing a pass
through the crease from Teuvo Teravainen for a tap-in. Aho extended his hot
streak and has goals in six consecutive games.
Noesen had a tap-in of his own midway through the first period on a feed from
Burns made it 3-0 with 7:13 left in the first, shooting at an open net
following a terrific setup by Jesperi Kotkaniemi.
Tuch got the Sabres on the board with 5:15 left in the first on a wrist shot
from the right circle. It was his 24th goal of the season.
Things went from bad to worse late in the second period for Buffalo. Sabres
leading scorer Tage Thompson left the game with an upper-body injury and did
not return. Thompson had been trying to play through injury in recent days and
missed practice on Monday. Thompson has 34 goals and 68 points in 50 games. The
injury puts his status for this weekend's NHL All-Star Game in jeopardy.
"Never got in a rhythm and obviously we played a very good hockey team and a
capable hockey team," Sabres coach Don Granato said. "It didn't matter who we
played tonight. That result was going to be not a favorable one for lots of the
reasons that were well within our control."
Buffalo outshot Carolina 8-1 to open the third period but was unable to get on
the board before Stepan made it 4-1. Stepan picked up his fifth goal of the
season with a deke around Luukkonen at the top of the crease.
Martinook added an empty-net goal with 1:41 remaining.
Sabres forward Jeff Skinner played in his 900th career game. He's the 63rd
active NHL player to play in 900 or more games. Skinner originally entered the
league with Carolina after being chosen seventh overall by the Hurricanes in
Hurricanes: After the All-Star break, travel home to play the New York Rangers
on Saturday, Feb. 11.
Sabres: After the All-Star break, host the Calgary Flames on Saturday, Feb. 11,
before heading across the country on a three-game road trip.
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