BOSTON — The Bruins and Maple Leafs met for the 17th time in the Stanley Cup playoffs. Boston won the series 4-3 to advance to the second round after defeating Toronto 2-1 in overtime.

The Bruins were on the brink -of blowing a 3-1 series lead when the Leafs won Games 5 and 6 to force Game 7. Each game of the series was decided by one goal, with the exception of Game 1, which Boston won decisively 5-1.

Boston clinched the series after David Pastrnak scored his third goal of the postseason at 1:54 of the overtime period.

“It was a really tough series,” Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery told reporters after the 2-1 overtime win at TD Garden. “It was very evenly played. This was our best game of the series, and I’m really proud of the players because this was an opportunity to seize the moment and be difference makers, and I felt everybody had the attitude of wanting to be a difference maker.”

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With Boston ending Toronto’s season, the Maple Leafs were eliminated from the postseason in the first round for the seventh time in eight years. Toronto coach Sheldon Keefe thought as hard fought as the series was, the Leafs beat themselves.

“It’s very evident when teams play the Leafs, they set the game up for the Leafs to beat themselves,” Keefe told reporters after the loss. “I thought we did that in (Games) 3 and 4, we beat ourselves with how we played at home.

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“But Game 2 and certainly in 5 and 6, the way we played, that’s a way we can win and did win three games of the series and didn’t beat ourselves.”

While Keefe may believe the Leafs beat themselves, Montgomery thought Game 7 was the Bruins’ best game of the series.

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“We started on time,” Montgomery said. “We weren’t being denied getting to the net. We were breaking pucks out well. We’ve done that at times in the games, but the speed with which we played, especially offensively. And then the way we held onto pucks and our defensemen were really involved. We were connected as five guys in all three zones, especially with the puck.”

Here are more notes from Saturday’s Bruins-Maple Leafs Game 7:

— The Bruins have won seven straight playoff series against the Leafs, dating back to the 1968-69 Eastern Conference semifinals when Boston defeated Toronto in a four-game sweep.

— Hampus Lindholm lit the lamp for the first time in the series to tie the game at one midway through the third period. The 30-year-old defenseman registered six shots on goal and assisted on Pastrnak’s game-winning goal in overtime.

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— After being pulled after the second period of Game 4, Toronto goaltender Ilya Samsonov started Game 7 for Joseph Woll, who injured himself late in Game 6 while trying to make a save on Morgan Geekie’s goal. Samsonov made 29 saves in the loss and finished with a 1-4 record in the series.

— The Bruins will meet the Florida Panthers in the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. The series begins on Monday with puck drop for Game 1 at Amerant Bank Arena scheduled for 8 p.m. ET and the game will be broadcast on ESPN.

Featured image via Bob DeChiara/USA TODAY Sports Images