Islanders Fall to Carolina 5-4 in Overtime

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NEW YORK — The Islanders fought from behind all night – tying Saturday night’s game against the Carolina Hurricanes on three different occasions – but in the end Carolina still got the best of New York in a 5-4 overtime win.

The loss was the Islanders second straight, which started with a heartbreaking 5-4 loss on Friday that snapped a seven-game point streak. Saturday’s defeat could fit in a similar category with the game-winning goal coming 2:52 into overtime and the Islanders caught in a bad spot.

John Tavares broke his stick on the faceoff and the Hurricanes capitalized on the Islanders misfortune. Justin Faulk was able to draw in a stickless Tavares and Nick Leddy, leaving Ron Hainsey alone at the high slot to score off a one-timer.

The goal was Hainsey’s second of the night.

“Unfortunate,” Tavares said about the circumstances that preceded the Carolina goal. “I just tried to go on instinct. I just tried to stand beside somebody and take them completely out of the play. Try to eliminate a point blank opportunity or a one-timer. There’s just a lot of room out there, so they’re able to get a good look.”

It was a fitting end to a game that saw the Hurricanes and Islanders trade chances in the first. Then saw a chaotic second period, which was then followed by a good third from the Islanders.

And while the Islanders did pick up an important point in the standings with the overtime loss, structural issues contributed to the team allowing five goals against Carolina. It was the second game in a row the Islanders had given up five goals to an opponent.

“We gave them some pretty good chances,” Ryan Strome said. “All there goals were almost breakdowns by us. There’s some things we need to tighten up obviously, but we got a point… We can certainly be a little better than that.”

Carolina jumped onto the scoreboard midway through the first period. Jaccob Slavin fired a rocket that went top shelf past JF Berube and gave Carolina a 1-0 lead.

The Islanders responded quickly to tie the game back up at one. Anders Lee redirected Dennis Seidenberg’s shot from the point at 11:14.

The second period started off well for the Islanders, who claimed their first lead of the game at 2:36.

The Hurricanes turned over the puck in the neutral zone and Shane Prince picked up the puck and raced into Carolina’s zone. Prince sent a pass to Strome, who in turn threw the puck towards the net and Casey Cizikas tipped the puck in as he fell forward to give the Islanders a 2-1 lead.

However the lead was short lived and began a wacky second that saw both sides continuously trade goals. Hainsey scored his frist goal of the night 21 seconds after Lee gave the Islanders the lead and a wrist shot from lee Stempniak beat Berube less than two minutes later.

The Islanders turned the tables on Carolina and tied the game back up with a minute left in the second. Brock Nelson fired a hard wrist shot from the top of the faceoff circle. The goal came moments after Ward made a big stop on Thomas Hickey.

The craziness of the second period continued in the closing seconds as Teuvo Teravainen scored gave the Hurricanes back the lead with 1.1 seconds on the clock.

The Islanders started the third with a lot more jump and it eventually paid off. The Islanders went on the power play and three seconds into it Josh Bailey scored the equalizer at 8:33 of the third.

Goaltending had been a strength of the Islanders during their recent point streak, but the position has struggled over the last two games. Berube made 20 saves on 25 shots in the Islanders loss and appeared to have a hard time finding the puck at times.

“I have to find a way to keep myself sharp,” Berube said after the game. “They’re a quick team and when they were coming into the zone they had some good looks. They were patient with the puck. The goal in the second period I kind of bit on the fake shot.

“I went down and opened up the backdoor, so plays like that. Just reading plays better overall.”

The Islanders remain five points out of the final wild card and have another important game on Monday against Toronto. The Maple Leafs picked up two points with a win over Boston and are two points back of the wild card spot.

“We have some big games coming up and none bigger than Monday,” Islanders head coach Doug Weight said. “A week can put you a point out of the playoffs or in the playoffs. We have to have a good week. We’ll take the point, we’ll watch the game again and learn from.

“Come out Monday and try to get two points.”

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