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Capitals cash in on Hockey Day In America, hurt Sabres’ playoff hopes 2-1

Feb 20, 2011, 3:31 PM EST

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Semyon Varlamov, Thomas Vanek

Both the Sabres and Capitals came into this game in serious need of a win. The Caps needed one for their confidence while the Sabres were in need of one to stay in the hunt for the playoffs. This time around, the Capitals got the confidence boost they needed thanks to the stellar work of Semyon Varlamov as they beat Buffalo 2-1.

Varlamov made 28 saves to lead the way for Washington. Mathieu Perreault got the Caps going with his offense getting a goal and an assist. The assist came on Marcus Johansson‘s eventual game-winner in the third period. Johansson tipped Perreault’s shot out front to beat Ryan Miller.

Without Miller in this game, the Sabres would’ve been run out of the arena. Miller made 37 saves to lead the way for the Sabres who only got one goal from Jason Pominville in the second period. After Miller’s sporadic play of late, getting a huge performance from him today was clutch for Buffalo. Unfortunately for them, giving up two goals was still one too many for the Sabres. For the Sabres, it’s their fourth straight loss at home and third loss in row overall. The Capitals have now won two of their last three after losing four in a row as they try to catch up to Tampa Bay in the Southeast Division.

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