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NHL: Buffalo 3, Florida 1

SUNRISE, Fla., March 20 (UPI) -- Ryan Miller was solid in nets Saturday, stopping 31 shots to boost the Buffalo Sabres to a 3-1 victory over Florida.

Buffalo got goals from Jochen Hecht, Patrick Kaleta and Mike Grier in improving to 2-1-1 during a five-game road trip and upping its lead over Ottawa in the Northeast Division to seven points. Ottawa lost in Dallas Saturday.

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The Panthers got their lone goal from Byron Bitz while falling to 1-3-1 over their last five contests. Tomas Vokoun was pulled in favor of Scott Clemmensen after turning aside 17-of-19 shots.

The loss meant Florida remained seven points behind Boston for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

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