The Islanders 4-3 win over the surging Montreal Canadiens capped off an emotional week.
Six goals in the second period led Islanders Captain Mark Streit
to say: “We scored a lot of goals. That’s good for the fans, a nightmare for the coaches. But it’s always tough after a game like the Rangers game to come back and rebound. We did it tonight.”
After a scoreless first period, PA PArenteau
(41 seconds), Jay Pandolfo
(3:01) and Streit (9:08) combined to score three unanswered goals within the first 10 minutes of the second period. Defensive lapses with just about five minutes left in the second period led to Montreal’s comeback, where goals from Max Pacioretty (14:52) and Erik Cole (17:38) closed the score to within one goal, 3-2.
|Goaltender Peter Budaj watches the puck shoot past him into the net for a second-period goal by P.A. Parenteau at Nassau Coliseum on November 17, 2011. (Photo by Mike Stobe/NHLI via Getty Images) |
“It was good for the team and our coaching staff to see how we were going to react,” Capuano said. “We got ourselves in a situation. I thought defensively in the neutral zone as the game went on we were stronger.”Matt Moulson
closed the second period with a goal at 18:15 to retake a two-goal lead, 4-2.
However, turnovers would cause problems later on in the third. The first led to Michael Grabner
’s tripping penalty and the second led to Steve Staios
taking a penalty for boarding. With 4:18 left on the clock, Brian Gionta scored a power play goal to cut the differential, 4-3.
“Turnovers cost us the momentum in the third period,” Capuano said. “We turned a puck over, we go to the penalty box and it snowballed from there. Obviously that’s an area of concern and we’ll have to address it.”
Luckily for the Islanders, a series of blocked shots at key moments kept the Canadiens at bay and despite being peppered by shots in the final minutes of play, they were able to hang on for the win.
“I think it’s a step in the right direction,” said goaltender Rick DiPietro
, who made 24 saves in 51:43 of relief action. “I wouldn’t say this is the end-all. There’s still a lot of work to be done… At the end of the day, this team isn’t going to settle for mediocrity. We’re not going to be happy winning one game and then losing a couple.”
The Islanders look to carry their momentum into Saturday night’s contest as they are set to face the defending Stanley Cup Champion Boston Bruins at Nassau Coliseum.Notes: Evgeni Nabokov
made one save before injuring his groin making his second stop of the night at 7:55. He will be reevaluated by team doctors on Friday. Pandolfo’s goal was the 100th of his career. Within the first six minutes of play, Brian Rolston and John Tavares
each had solid chances deflect off the crossbar.