Lightning's quest for 3-peat continues after eliminating Maple Leafs

Kevin Sousa / National Hockey League / Getty

The Tampa Bay Lightning are heading to the second round after defeating the Toronto Maple Leafs 2-1 in Game 7 on Saturday night.

Nick Paul opened the scoring for Tampa Bay late in the first period. John Tavares thought he scored the equalizer during the second frame, but the goal was called back due to an interference call on Justin Holl.

Morgan Rielly later tied things up before Paul scored his second of the contest, which held up as the game-winner.

Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 30 of 31 shots, while Jack Campbell turned away 23 shots.

This marks the Maple Leafs' sixth straight postseason in which they've failed to make it past the first round. The club hasn't reached the second round since 2004.

Victor Hedman, who had seven points in the series, commended the Maple Leafs on a good series and sees a bright future for the club.

"Unbelievable team ... close series ... they're a great group," Hedman said postgame, according to TSN's Pierre LeBrun. "They're going to get another chance at this. They're going to go a long way in the future.”

The Lightning will now take on the Florida Panthers as they look to win a third straight Stanley Cup.

Lightning's quest for 3-peat continues after eliminating Maple Leafs
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