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Crosby sparks Penguins' 5-3 win over Sabres

Pittsburgh Penguins' Steve Sullivan (26) scores on Buffalo Sabres goalie Ryan Miller during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Buffalo, N.Y., Friday, March 30, 2012. Pittsburgh Penguins' Steve Sullivan (26) scores on Buffalo Sabres goalie Ryan Miller during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Buffalo, N.Y., Friday, March 30, 2012. (AP Photo/David Duprey)
By John Wawrow
AP Sports Writer / March 30, 2012
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BUFFALO, N.Y.—Sore nose and all, Sidney Crosby had a goal and three assists to help Pittsburgh beat Buffalo 5-3 on Friday night, snapping the Penguins' mini-slump and slowing the Sabres' late-season surge.

It was Crosby's third four-point game in a season in which concussion troubles have limited him to 18 games. And it came after he was held without a point in his past two outings and a day after his nose was bloodied by a puck in a 5-3 loss at the New York Islanders.

Steve Sullivan had a goal and two assists, Evgeni Malkin had a goal and assist, and Pascal Dupuis set up two to extend his points streak to an NHL season-best 13 games. Pittsburgh (48-24-6) rebounded from two straight losses to the Islanders and moved four points ahead of fifth-place Philadelphia in the Eastern Conference standings.

The Sabres (38-30-10) had a five-game winning streak snapped, and dropped into ninth place, behind the Washington Capitals. Both teams have four games left and 86 points, but the Capitals hold the tiebreaker edge.

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