Shane Pinto has a goal and 3 assists as the Senators roll to 6-2 win over the Sabres


BUFFALO, N.Y. — Shane Pinto had a goal and three assists, and the Ottawa Senators enjoyed a five-goal first-period surge in cruising to a 6-2 victory over the Buffalo Sabres on Wednesday night.

Artem Zub opened the scoring 2:37 in an outing the Senators led 4-0 by the 8:49 mark of the opening period, and Pinto closed the scoring with an empty-net goal. Brady Tkachuk, Boris Katchouk, Jakob Chychrun and Drake Batherson each had a goal and assist.

Joonas Korpisalo had 34 saves to improve to 5-1 in his past six starts.

JJ Peterka and Connor Clifton scored for Buffalo in a matchup of two Atlantic Division teams all but mathematically out of playoff contention.

Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen was yanked after allowing four goals on nine shots. Devon Levi mopped up in allowing one goal on 32 shots.

The Sabres’ flat start was indicative of a team still attempting to get acclimated to playing at home after spending much of the past week on a western road swing that closed with a 4-1 win at Calgary on Sunday. Buffalo lost three of five on the trip to tumble eight points out of Eastern Conference playoff race.

Zub opened the scoring by sweeping in a loose puck that dribbled in behind Luukkonen, after he stopped Katchouk’s shot that was deflected in front by Mark Kastelic. Katchouk scored 2:19 later by deflecting in Parker Kelly’s shot from the right circle.

Luukkonen was pulled after Chychrun made it 4-0 by blasting in a shot from the left circle. Tkachuk capped the surge in the final minute to mark the 17th time the Senators have scored at least five goals in one period — and first time since a five-goal second period in a 6-4 win against Montreal on April 23, 2022.

The team record is six, which came in the first period of a 7-1 win over Atlanta on March 21, 2000.

For Peterka, the goal was his 25th of the season to move him into the team lead — one ahead of Jeff Skinner. Alex Tuch had an assist to extend his point streak to six games in which he has a goal and seven assists.

Sabres rookie center Jack Quinn returned after missing 23 games with a lower-body injury.

UP NEXT

Senators: Host the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday night.

Sabres: Resume a five-game homestand against the New Jersey Devils on Friday night.

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AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/nhl



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