Buffalo, N.Y. (WGR 550) - The Buffalo Sabres scored five unanswered goals in the third period to turn a two-goal deficit into a 6-3 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday night at KeyBank Center.
The Penguins scored first thanks to a 2-on-1 chance midway through the opening period. Jason Zucker capitalized on a one-timer from Evgeni Malkin to give Pittsburgh a 1-0 lead. The goal was Zucker's second of the season.
Both teams debuted their "Reverse Retro" uniforms in the game. Buffalo's uniform was based off of the old "goathead" era of jerseys.
The Sabres were credited with 11 shots on goal in the opening period, but were not able to score against Casey DeSmith. Eric Comrie stopped five of Pittsburgh's six shots on goal.
Josh Archibald converted on another odd-man rush, this time early in the second period to extend Pittsburgh's lead to 2-0. Ryan Poehling made the pass that helped set up the goal. Poehling and Brock McGinn were credited with the assists.
JJ Peterka was able to trim the Sabres' deficit in half after the team was able to keep the puck in the offensive zone. Owen Power and Rasmus Asplund were awarded the assists on Peterka's third goal of the season with just over a minute to go in the middle stanza.
The two teams traded power play goals early in the third period to liven up the game. Jake Gunetzel's tally came just eight seconds into the frame when he beat Comrie on a breakaway chance.
About three minutes later, Tage Thompson capitalized on a DeSmith tripping penalty to bring Buffalo back within a goal, 3-2. Rasmus Dahlin fed the pass to Thompson, while Jeff Skinner helped cycle the puck in the offensive end. Both players were rewarded with assists as a result.
Victor Olofsson tied the hockey game at 3-3 with his seventh goal of the season off a nice pass from Power. The rookie defenseman faked a shot from the point, which caused the Penguins to bite and a passing lane to open up. Olofsson's shot into a wide-open net didn't miss.
Thompson and Skinner helped create an odd-man rush for the blue and gold to create an Alex Tuch goal that gave Buffalo a 4-3 lead over the visitors. Tuch tipped home a Thompson pass through traffic for his seventh goal of the year.
The Sabres scored a pair of empty net goals to cement the victory. Kyle Okposo scored the first goal after Zemgus Girgensons won a battle to cancel out an icing call. Moments later, Olofsson scored his second of the game to double Buffalo's lead with seconds remaining.
PIT: 6:28 - Jason Zucker (2) (Evgeni Malkin)
BUF: 18:51 - JJ Peterka (3) (Owen Power, Rasmus Asplund)
PIT: 5:50 - Josh Archibald (3) (Ryan Poehling, Brock McGinn)
BUF: 3:21 - Tage Thompson (7) PPG (Rasmus Dahlin, Jeff Skinner); 6:29 - Victor Olofsson (7) (Owen Power); 10:34 - Alex Tuch (7) (Tage Thompson, Jeff Skinner); 18:24 - Kyle Okposo (1) ENG (Zemgus Girgensons, Rasmus Dahlin); 19:53 - Victor Olofsson (8) ENG (Jacob Bryson)
PIT: 0:08 - Jake Guentzel (5) PPG (Kris Letang, Evgeni Malkin)
BUF: 10:06 - Kyle Okposo (Slashing - 2 min.); 19:24 - Dylan Cozens (Tripping - 2 min.)
PIT: 8:40 - Evgeni Malkin (Hooking - 2 min.)
BUF: 19:58 - Dylan Cozens (Slashing - 2 min.); 19:58 - Casey Mittelstadt (Unsportsmanlike conduct - 2 min.)
PIT: 2:28 - Casey DeSmith (Tripping - 2 min.); 7:17 - Jake Guentzel (Slashing - 2 min.); 12:52 - Jeff Petry (Interference - 2 min.); 19:58 - Josh Archibald (Slashing - 2 min.)
Losi and Gangi Three Stars of the Game:
1.) Tage Thompson - BUF
2.) Alex Tuch - BUF
3.) Owen Power - BUF
The Sabres will head out on the road for a quick two-game road trip. It begins on Friday night against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina.
The puck drops between the Sabres and Hurricanes at 7 p.m. ET on the flagship home of the Sabres Radio Network - WGR Sports Radio 550. Pregame coverage with Mike Schopp and the Bulldog begins at 6 p.m. ET.