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Ducks pull off about-face, defeat Sabres 4-3

Feb 19, 2024; Buffalo, New York, USA;  Anaheim Ducks center Isac Lundestrom (21) looks to control the puck as Buffalo Sabres defenseman Rasmus Dahlin (26) defends during the first period at KeyBank Center. Mandatory Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Timothy T. Ludwig-USA TODAY Sports

Frank Vatrano scored two goals for the visiting Anaheim Ducks, who recovered from a defensive meltdown over the weekend for a 4-3 win against the Buffalo Sabres on Monday afternoon.

Troy Terry had a goal and two assists, Mason McTavish had three assists and John Gibson made 33 saves for the Ducks, who were outshot 36-15 in the finale of the four-game trip. Anaheim lost 9-2 at Toronto on Saturday.

Jordan Greenway, Tage Thompson and Zach Benson scored goals, Dylan Cozens had two assists and Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen made 11 saves for the Sabres, who have lost four of six.

The Sabres took a 1-0 lead at 9:07 of the first period.

The Ducks turned the puck over in the neutral zone and Cozens carried it across the blue line before passing to Greenway on his left. Greenway took two strides before scoring with a wrist shot from the high slot.

Anaheim tied it 1-1 just over a minute later.

Ross Johnston forced a turnover by Buffalo defenseman Erik Johnson in the corner of the Sabres’ zone and he nudged the puck to Max Jones, who was cutting through the slot. Jones passed the puck to a trailing Adam Henrique, who banked his shot off the bottom of the cross bar and across the goal line at 10:10.

Buffalo was on its first power play when Thompson scored with a one-timer from the right circle to give the Sabres a 2-1 lead at 8:10 of the second period.

Anaheim tied it 2-2 at 11:59 of the second when McTavish took a one-timer from the right circle that Luukkonen stopped, but he didn’t secure the puck and Vatrano swept it into the net.

Vatrano scored again off a feed from McTavish to finish a 2-on-1 rush and give the Ducks a 3-2 lead at 14:34.

The Sabres tied it 3-3 at 15:20 when Benson tipped in a slap shot from Henri Jokiharju.

The Ducks regained the lead at 18:56 of the second when Terry received a pass at the side of the net after McTavish forced a turnover and skated in front before scoring his own rebound. The 21-year-old McTavish had the third three-assist game of his career.

–Field Level Media

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