Buffalo Beats Capitals, 4-3 (OT), In Preseason Opener

Photo: Della Young/NoVa Caps

The Washington Capitals lost the Buffalo Sabres by a score of 4-3 in overtime in their first preseason game on Sunday afternoon at Capital One Arena. Goaltenders Zach Fucale, who made 15 saves on 17 shots in the first 30:04 of the outing, and Hunter Shepard, who finished with nine stops on 11 attempts in the final 31:11, appeared.

Capitals’ Lines vs. Sabres

Aliaksei Protas — Nic Dowd — Conor Sheary
Alexander Suzdalev — Connor McMichael — Anthony Mantha
Joe Snively — Hendrix Lapierre — Brett Leason
Haakon Hanelt — Ryan Hofer — Garrett Pilon

Dru Krebs — Nick Jensen
Martin Fehervary — Vincent Iorio
Erik Gustafsson — Martin Has


Healthy scratches: LW Beck Malenstyn, LHD Gabriel Carlsson

First Period


1-0 Capitals, 4:05 (power play); Mantha blasted a one-timer from the right dot after Gustafsson fed him from up top.

Shots: 11-6 BUF

Notes: The Sabres would start the second period with 15 seconds left on the power play and the Capitals won 69% of the draws through 20 minutes.

Second Period


1-1, 4:25 (power play): Center Dylan Cozens ripped one past the blocker from the right dot with Fucale screened to finish a triangular passing play for the Sabres.

2-1 Sabres, 9:16: Center Tyson Kozak ripped a wrister to the corner blocker-side on a three-on-one.

2-2, 9:42: Sheary waited and ripped a wrister at the doorstep after Protas fed him cross-ice on a two-on-one.

Shots: 18-15 BUF (9-7 WSH in the period)

Notes: The Capitals won 62% of the draws through 40 minutes.

Third Period


3-2 Capitals, 5:43: Iorio wristed a point shot after the puck went to him off of the boards on a pass by Leason and Snively deflected it past the glove.

3-3, 18:55: Center Jack Quinn shoveled one on the back door after Jensen attempted to block a pass from left-wing Brett Murray in the line with the goalie pulled.

Shots: 27-27 (12-9 WSH in third)

Notes: The Capitals won 60% of the faceoffs.


4-3 Sabres, 1:15: Right-wing Vinnie Hinostroza deflected defenseman Lawrence Pilut’s wrister pass over the glove of Shepard in front to win it. It was the only shot of overtime.

Next game: Wednesday at Philadelphia Flyers (7 PM, NBC Sports Washington locally, NHL Network nationally)

By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was watching the Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup in Las Vegas. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
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7 Responses to Buffalo Beats Capitals, 4-3 (OT), In Preseason Opener

  1. Jon Sorensen says:

  2. GR+in+430 says:

    Granted I was watching it on TV, but I was pretty disappointed in Gustafsson. He can run a power play, but his defensive play is pretty bad. In his worst plays, Hinostrozza beat him twice, once to draw a penalty that resulted in the game tying goal, and then in the OT on the deflection. On that D pair, Has was the much better defender.

    As to the other D, Iorio and Fehervary were really good together… Krebs needs a bunch more development time. Jensen is still really good.

    McMike, Snively, Protas and Pilon were the best of the young-ish forwards from what I could see. Snively should not be risked through waivers, and I’d love to see Pilon get a real shot at making the team, but most likely he will have to get it from another franchise.

  3. Dan+Hornbaker says:

    Protas on wing in 1st game I find interesting. I imagine he’ll be a center in another game, but can’t help to think they’d love to have his size in the corners.

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