Isles fall to Sabres, 4-3, in shootout

Nielsen's three point (2g/1a) night not enough for win

Saturday, 02.4.2012 / 10:57 PM ET / News
By Cory Wright
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Isles fall to Sabres, 4-3, in shootout

After a euphoric overtime win on Friday night in Ottawa, and a .500 record within reach, the Islanders left an important point on the table in a 4-3 shootout loss to the Buffalo Sabres Saturday night at Nassau Coliseum.

“We knew it was going to be a tough weekend,” Al Montoya said after the loss. “[There were] huge points on the line. It’s unfortunate that we couldn’t come out with two points.”

Brad Boyes and Jason Pominville both scored low shots in the shootout, with Boyes netting the game-decider. PA Parenteau and Frans Nielsen, the Islanders shootout specialists, were unable to find the twine.

“We knew it was going to be a tough weekend,” Al Montoya said after the loss. “[There were] huge points on the line. It’s unfortunate that we couldn’t come out with two points.”

John Tavares with an intense glare during the Islanders 4-3 SO loss to the Sabres on Satruday night. Click image for complete photo galler.
The Islanders held a 3-1 lead after the first period before allowing Buffalo to claw their way back into the game. In overtime, the Sabres bench took a sloppy penalty for too many men at 2:28 giving the Isles a power play and a chance to win the game. They could not convert with the man advantage.
 
“We had the lead, but we didn’t play a great game,” Captain Mark Streit said. “We had the [overtime] power play, we had lots of scoring chances. Sometimes he [Ryan Miller] didn’t even see the puck coming it just hit him, but credit to him. He played a really good game.”

The Islanders got to Miller early, netting three goals on eight shots. Nielsen, who had a three-point night, opened the scoring by finishing a Michael Grabner feed at 1:39 of the first period. Nielsen had a hand in Josh Bailey’s sixth goal of the season at 16:00 and then buried his second goal 1:17 later to put the Isles up 3-1. 

“I was hoping that we would show up and play better than we did after winning yesterday,” Nielsen said. “We were lucky to be up 3-1. We can’t just sit back when we have the lead.”

Nathan Gerbe got the Sabres on the board at 5:32 of the first period, firing a wrist shot that Al Montoya was only able to partially block. Montoya, who had 16 saves in the first period, lost sight of the puck as it hit his shoulder and floated into the net.

Derek Roy ended his seven-game scoring drought with his 10th goal and put the Sabres within one with 1:19 remaining in the second period. Paul Gaustad eventually completed the comeback at 11:46 of the third period. Miller, who was shaky in the first period, finished the game strong, stopping 35-of-38, including nine in the overtime.

“He’s a world-class goaltender,” Matt Martin said. “He’s going to find ways to win hockey games for them. He did his part.”

There was a scary scene during the third period as Travis Hamonic took a deflected Christian Erhoff slap-shot to the face. Hamonic stayed down on the ice before leaving the game. Jack Capuano said post-game that Hamonic was taken to the hospital for further evaluation.

After two games in two nights, the Islanders don’t play again until Tuesday, as they take on the Philadelphia Flyers at Wells Fargo Center. The game gets under way at 7 p.m.

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - NYR 82 53 22 7 252 192 113
2 y - MTL 82 50 22 10 221 189 110
3 x - TBL 82 50 24 8 262 211 108
4 x - WSH 82 45 26 11 242 203 101
5 x - NYI 82 47 28 7 252 230 101
6 x - DET 82 43 25 14 235 221 100
7 x - OTT 82 43 26 13 238 215 99
8 x - PIT 82 43 27 12 221 210 98
9 BOS 82 41 27 14 213 211 96
10 FLA 82 38 29 15 206 223 91
11 CBJ 82 42 35 5 236 250 89
12 PHI 82 33 31 18 215 234 84
13 NJD 82 32 36 14 181 216 78
14 CAR 82 30 41 11 188 226 71
15 TOR 82 30 44 8 211 262 68
16 BUF 82 23 51 8 161 274 54

STATS

2014-2015 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Bailey 3 1 3 2 4
K. Okposo 3 2 1 2 3
J. Tavares 3 1 2 3 3
R. Strome 3 2 0 1 2
B. Nelson 3 2 0 1 2
L. Visnovsky 3 0 2 4 2
C. Clutterbuck 3 1 0 1 1
C. de Haan 3 0 1 0 1
N. Leddy 3 0 1 0 1
M. Martin 3 0 1 0 1
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 2 1 0 .929 2.01

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