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Pastrnak’s 57th goal helps Bruins edge Maple Leafs in overtime

David Pastrnak scored his 57th goal of the season at 2:30 of overtime to give the history-chasing Boston Bruins a 2-1 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday night.

Pastrnak blasted a shot from inside the left circle as the Bruins notched their 61st victory — one off the NHL season record set by Detroit in 1995-96 and matched by Tampa Bay in 2018-19.

“Got it by the defence and it ended up going into the net,” said Pastrnak, who still took the ice despite battling a stomach virus. “The guys did an amazing job and helped motivate me, too. I give thanks to them.”

“I can’t give him enough credit for how he willed himself to help us win this hockey game tonight,” Bruins coach Jim Montgomery said.

WATCH | Pastrnak’s OT marker lifts Bruins past Maple Leafs:

Bruins edge Maple Leafs in OT with Pastrnak’s 57th goal of season

4 hours ago

Duration 1:31

Boston claims their 61st victory of the season as David Pastrnak lifts them to a 2-1 overtime win over Toronto who clinch home ice for their first round series in the playoffs despite the loss. The Bruins are one win off the NHL season record set by the Red Wings in 1995-96 and matched by the Lightning in 2018-19.

Jeremy Swayman made 31 saves for Boston, winners of four straight, and Charlie Coyle also scored. The Bruins are now 61-12-5 — good for 127 points with four games remaining in the regular season. The 1976-77 Montreal Canadiens hold the regular-season record with 132 points

“That’s why this city is so special to play in front of. It was good preparation [in relation to the upcoming Stanley Cup playoffs],” said Swayman.

Ilya Samsonov made 31 saves for Toronto, which led 1-0 heading into the third period on Sam Lafferty’s second-period goal.

“I thought our guys played incredibly hard. It took a bit to adjust to the opponent, but that’s a big point for us,” said Toronto head coach Sheldon Keefe.

After outshooting Toronto, 11-7, in a scoreless first period, Boston saw the visitors break through with the first goal with 9:26 left in the second. A turnover near centre ice resulted in Maple Leafs forward Zach Aston-Reese firing a shot from just inside the blue line. Lafferty beat Swayman for his 12th goal of the season.

Boston got the equalizer with 8:25 remaining in regulation. Brandon Carlo kept the possession alive in the Toronto zone before getting a pass under duress to Coyle, who beat Samsonov for his 14th of the campaign.

“I had a bunch of room to work with and that gave me time,” Coyle said. “Lucky that it found a way in.”

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