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Bruins unbeaten in last four games

3/12/2004

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) -- Boston forward Mike Knuble picked the
perfect time to have a milestone moment.

Knuble scored his 20th goal of the season and 100th of his NHL
career 1:15 into overtime, lifting the Bruins to a 3-2 victory
Thursday night over the Buffalo Sabres.

Jiri Slegr and Martin Lapointe also scored for the Bruins, who
extended their unbeaten streak to four games (3-0-1).

The Bruins have garnered points in 13 of their last 14 road
games (8-1-3-2), and killed seven of eight Sabres power-play
opportunities.

"We're not going to win many games taking that many
penalties," Bruins coach Mike Sullivan said. "I thought our
penalty killers did a great job, and Felix was there to make a
timely save for us when we needed it."

Felix Potvin made 18 saves in winning for the third time in four
starts (3-0-1).

Miroslav Satan and J.P. Dumont scored for the Sabres, who are
chasing the New York Islanders for eighth place in the Eastern
Conference. The Sabres closed within four points of the Islanders,
who lost 5-4 at San Jose.

Both teams have 12 games remaining.

"We'll take the point," said goaltender Martin Biron, who was
coming off a shutout of Washington on Wednesday. "We've played six
good periods of hockey the last two games, so we'll be content with
it."

Biron finished with 29 saves, but was victimized by two Bruins
goals just over a two-minute span bridging the third period and
overtime.

Lapointe beat Biron with a wrist shot from the slot that gave
the Bruins their first lead of the game, 2-1, with just 1:15
remaining in the third.

Satan sent the game to overtime with a slap shot from the slot
with 25 seconds left, while Biron was off the ice for an extra
skater.

But Knuble took a perfect pass from newly acquired Sergei
Gonchar and fired a one-timer from the top of the left circle that
eluded Biron and gave the Bruins their fourth victory in five games
against the Sabres.

"We got Sergei to make plays like that," said Knuble, who
scored for the third consecutive game. "He put it right on my
stick. Biron got a piece of it, but it was heavy enough to get
through."

Biron made two key saves in the second period on Knuble and
Lapointe. Potvin's consistency throughout the game kept Boston in
it.

"At both ends of the rink, the goaltenders were really solid,"
Sullivan said.

Dumont gave Buffalo a 1-0 lead at 12:01 of the second while the
Sabres had a two-man advantage. Standing alone at the bottom of the
right circle, Dumont received a pass from Dmitri Kalinin and lifted
the puck over a sliding Potvin. It was Dumont's 17th goal, his
first in six games.

The goal also snapped Potvin's shutout streak against the Sabres
at 152 minutes, 1 second.

Slegr tied it at 1 at 9:49 of the third period with a slap shot
from the right point that beat Biron, who had lost his stick. That
snapped Biron's shutout string at 111:08.

"It was a great point for us," Buffalo coach Lindy Ruff said.
"That's the best team on the road in the NHL. I like the way we
came to play."

Michael Nylander had three assists for the Bruins, who won for
the seventh time when trailing after two periods (7-16-2-2).

"I think guys respond well to the challenge when things aren't
going our way," Lapointe said. "It's good that we had this kind
of game. We knew they're battling for every point. Fortunately for
us we got the last goal."
^Notes:@ The Bruins have just three more wins (34) than Buffalo
(31), but have 19 more points. The Bruins earned 21 points in games
they didn't win. ... The teams will meet again in Boston on
Saturday. ... Buffalo has played Boston 214 times, its highest
total against any NHL team. ... Boston C Joe Thornton played his
500th NHL game, all with Boston. ... Boston D Andy Delmore,
acquired from Buffalo on Tuesday just before the trade deadline,
was a healthy scratch. ... Buffalo D Jeff Jillson played against
his former team for the first time. Jillson was obtained by the
Sabres in a three-way deadline deal that also involved San Jose.