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Isles fall to Sabres, 4-3, in shootout

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

Saturday, 02.04.2012 / 10:57 PM / 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 PIT 31 21 6 4 99 71 46
2 TBL 33 20 10 3 110 87 43
3 NYI 31 21 10 0 99 89 42
4 DET 32 17 7 8 92 80 42
5 MTL 33 20 11 2 88 82 42
6 TOR 32 19 10 3 110 91 41
7 FLA 30 14 8 8 68 76 36
8 WSH 31 15 10 6 91 85 36
9 BOS 32 16 13 3 81 83 35
10 NYR 29 15 10 4 89 79 34
11 OTT 31 13 12 6 82 86 32
12 CBJ 31 13 15 3 76 100 29
13 PHI 31 11 14 6 81 92 28
14 BUF 32 13 17 2 62 100 28
15 NJD 33 11 16 6 74 96 28
16 CAR 31 9 19 3 66 88 21

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Tavares 31 12 15 -5 27
K. Okposo 31 7 20 -3 27
B. Nelson 31 13 11 4 24
R. Strome 31 6 15 10 21
F. Nielsen 31 6 11 0 17
N. Leddy 31 5 10 7 15
J. Boychuk 21 2 12 7 14
M. Grabovski 28 5 7 4 12
N. Kulemin 31 5 7 -3 12
T. Hickey 30 2 9 1 11
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
J. Halak 16 6 0 .917 2.35
C. Johnson 5 4 0 .868 3.59

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