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Thursday, 10.13.2005 / 12:00 AM / News
New York Islanders
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Islanders 5, Capitals 3 -- Snow stars as DiP replacement

By Kerry Gwydir


Rookie Petteri Nokelainen's first NHL goal at 1:03 of the third period -- followed shortly by his first NHL assist, on a goal by Mark Parrish at 3:23, were the key moments in the Islander's 5-3 win in Washington this evening.

You could make the case that the stars of tonight's win were the youngest and oldest players on the Islanders. Nokelainen, just 19, dominated the third period centering Oleg Kvasha and Parrish. Garth Snow, 36 years old, was sterling when he had to sub for Rick DiPietro in the second period after the starting goalie missed the rest of the game after a head-to-skate collision while making a save. DiPietro suffered a concussion and is listed as day-to-day because his injury is not considered serious. Snow made 13 saves on 14 shots.

"Petteri was fantastic," said Islanders head coach Steve Stirling after the game. "We couldn't have asked for more from him. He was having an excellent game even before getting his two points, big insurance goals for us. I'm really happy for Nokey.

"And Garth was great," continued Stirling. "That's a tough spot for any goalie. But to ask Garth to go in when he hadn't played a minute so far in the regular season...well, he was a big part of this win."

Alexei Yashin got the Isles on the board first when the Islander captain re-directed home Brad Lukowich's point shot past Johnson. Yashin got position on Washington captain Brendan Witt in front and was left unchecked to score his second of the season at the 2:10 mark.

Robert Nilsson initiated the Isle's second goal just 1:03 later when Trent Hunter managed to bank a poor-angled shot off Johnson's skates and over the goal line. Nilsson, who skated the puck into the offensive zone alone as his team changed, managed to win a battle along the boards and find Jason Blake cruising into the Washington end. The Islander left wing quickly whisked the puck down low to Hunter, who snapped off his first of the season. It was Nilsson's first assist and point of his NHL career.

Oleg Kvasha and Blake joined together for the third goal of the opener, a shorthanded tally with Brent Sopel in the box. Kvasha played a big part in the score when he pressured Washington defenseman Mike Green at the Isle's blueline. That forced a turnover in the neutral zone with Blake and Kvasha roaring down on a 2-on-1 with Blake finishing off a nifty display of tic-tac-toe from Kvasha eight minutes in. Lukowich notched his second helper of the night on the sequence. 

The hosts answered as the powerplay ended when forward Matt Bradley snapped a short-sided goal between DiPietro and the post. Alex Ovechkin assisted on the tally, which came when Bradley wheeled out from behind the Islander net.

After the Isles failed to bury several early quality scoring chances in the second, Washington continued to rally. Steve Eminger brought the Caps to within one at the 7:52 mark with his second of the season as he roofed a Brian Willsie centering pass over DiPietro's left shoulder.

DiPietro would be knocked out of the game with 11:09 to go in the same stanza during a goal-mouth collision involving Washington's Jeff Halpern. On the play, Ovechkin tried to pull the puck around Janne Niinimaa and rush the front of the Isle's net. DiPietro dove out to poke-check the puck, and was met by Halpern's skate in the mask. After head trainer Rich Campbell examined DiPietro for several minutes, DiPietro left the game under his own power and was replaced by Garth Snow.

A minute later, the Isles had a goal nullified courtesy of video review. Hunter had an apparent second goal waved off with 9:38 left when he kicked a pass from Blake toward the net. As the puck beat Johnson, Hunter barely missed deflecting the puck with his stick thus making the play legal.

"We responded tonight," said Kvasha, who had three assists. "It was a good game for us."

The story, however, was Nokelainen, the Islander's 2004 first round pick who stepped in for the injured Shawn Bates and made his presence felt. "It wasn't the prettiest goal," said Nokelainen after the game, "but I'll take it. I waited four games for it and it was worth it because we won the game. I'm proud of my first points, but winning is all that really matters."

The Islanders out-shot Washington, 49-29...D Brad Lukowich had two assists...Matt Bradley scored in the final minute for Washington to make the score 5-3...the Islanders were without F Shawn Bates, who is day-to-day with a hip injury.


(45) Arron Asham-(79) Alexei Yashin-(81) Miroslav Satan
(55) Jason Blake-(16) Mike York-(7) Trent Hunter
(12) Oleg Kvasha-(29) Petteri Nokelainen-(37) Mark Parrish
(11) Mattias Weinhandl-(21) Robert Nilsson-(49) Eric Godard

(77) Alexei Zhitnik-(3) Brent Sopel
(25) Brad Lukowich-(14) Chris Campoli
(44) Janne Niinimaa-(24) Radek Martinek

(39) Rick DiPietro
(30) Garth Snow


(8) Alexander Ovechkin-(11) Jeff Halpern-(24) Brian Willsie
(16) Brian Sutherby-(9) Dainius Zubrus-(17) Chris Clark
(12) Jeff Friesen-(25) Andrew Cassels-(20) Petr Sykora
(10) Matt Bradley(15) Boyd Gordon(27) Ben Clymer
(52) Mike Green(6) Jamie Heward
(44) Steve Eminger(19) Brendan Witt
(26) Shaone Morrison(34) Mathieu Biron

(1)   Brent Johnson
(37) Olie Kolzig




1 TBL 48 30 14 4 156 127 64
2 NYI 46 31 14 1 151 129 63
3 DET 47 27 11 9 139 119 63
4 MTL 45 29 13 3 123 106 61
5 PIT 46 26 12 8 138 117 60
6 NYR 44 27 13 4 134 106 58
7 WSH 46 24 13 9 137 120 57
8 BOS 48 25 16 7 126 121 57
9 FLA 44 20 14 10 107 122 50
10 OTT 46 19 18 9 126 128 47
11 TOR 48 22 23 3 142 150 47
12 PHI 48 19 22 7 130 146 45
13 CBJ 45 20 22 3 113 142 43
14 NJD 47 17 22 8 107 134 42
15 CAR 46 16 25 5 98 120 37
16 BUF 47 14 30 3 89 167 31


J. Tavares 46 21 24 -2 45
K. Okposo 46 14 30 -2 44
R. Strome 46 8 25 16 33
B. Nelson 46 15 15 6 30
F. Nielsen 46 9 16 4 25
J. Boychuk 36 4 18 15 22
J. Bailey 34 8 13 8 21
N. Leddy 46 7 14 15 21
N. Kulemin 46 11 9 1 20
A. Lee 40 13 5 7 18
J. Halak 25 9 0 .910 2.41
C. Johnson 6 5 0 .870 3.38 is the official Web site of the New York Islanders Hockey Club, L.P. and are trademarks of New York Islanders Hockey Club, L.P.  NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2015 New York Islanders Hockey Club, L.P. and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.

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