Last night the Carolina Hurricanes hosted the Buffalo Sabres in the first game of a back-to-back, home-and-home stint and were able to find a way to come up victorious as they sunk the Sabres 6 goals to 3.
The first twenty minutes of play went scoreless as both teams battled back and forth, netting under ten shots a piece. They came out in the second period with the sole purpose of putting the puck in the back of the net. A feat that they have only managed to do twice in their last two games combined. A little over one minute in the second Jeff Skinner was able to put a backhander past net minder Jonas Enroth, instilling a lead for the Hurricanes for the first time on the season. Three minutes later, defensman Justin Faulk was able to push one past Enroth as well instilling a 2-0 lead for the Canes.
Jason Pominville and the Sabres didn’t let the lead last long as they answered back a few minutes later and were able to tie the game at 2 mid-way through the frame. Battling to re-gain their lead, Jeff Skinner slipped a wrap-around shot past Enroth and gave the Canes a 3-2 lead at the 13:56 marker. Just nine seconds later captain Eric Staal finally found the back of the net, despite leading the team in shots he had yet to score a goal. With his added tally the Canes went into the locker room with a 4-2 lead over the Sabres, to preserve going into the third and final period.
Jason Pominville netted his second of the night to cut the Canes lead to 1 early on in the final period, but the Canes held the upper hand as Eric Staal added a quick shot that beat the goaltender for a 5-3 lead, and then the eventual empty net goal for hiss first hat trick of the season.
In beating the Sabres the Canes and their fans alike can now breath a sigh of relief as they worked out the kinks and have a victory under their belt. They pushed the puck hard and crashed the net and were able to find the groove they seemed to have been missing in the previous two games.
The two are set for a re-match today as Carolina now heads to Buffalo to play them at the First Niagra Center. The puck drops at 7PM.