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by Dyan LeBourdais / New York Islanders
When forward Matt Moulson scored at 13:07 in the first period, the Islanders had hope. But in the second period, the game turned on its edge as the Panthers tallied four goals and beat the Islanders 4-1 on Saturday night.

“The second period cost us the hockey game,” said Islanders interim head coach Jack Capuano. “Not getting a goal on the five-on-three was a big turning point, but the five or six minute lapse in the second obviously cost us.”

At the end of the game, Moulson was clearly unhappy, saying that as a team the Islanders need to come out and play with more passion after suffering a 12 game winless streak.

Disappointed, as any player in his position should be, Moulson said, “Our minds have to be on winning the game. I don’t think we can worry about that (the consequences of losing) as professional athletes. We can’t be worrying about that every single day. First thing is getting that win and playing with a little more passion and heart.”

Goaltender Tomas Vokoun #29 of the Florida Panthers makes a stick save against Josh Bailey #12 of the New York Islanders on November 20, 2010 at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, New York. (Photo by Mike Stobe/NHLI via Getty Images)
Moulson’s goal was beautiful as the Panthers gave away the puck when Bryan McCabe passed right to Moulson waiting in the slot, delivering a wrist shot to goaltender Tomas Vokoun’s glove side.

At the end of the first period, the Islanders had the opportunity to increase the score deficit by two goals when David Booth and Bryan Allen went to the penalty box just 15 seconds apart, giving the Islanders a two man advantage for 1:45, but the Islanders came up empty.

“We weren’t getting pucks in deep,” said Islanders defenseman Mike Mottau. “It was right after our 5-on-3 power play that didn’t convert and we kind of got back on our heals for a bit. We stopped getting pucks in deep and they came at us pretty good. We have to be mentally strong to rise to the challenge after a couple of those goals went in.”

After failing to convert with a two man advantage, the second period cost the Islanders the game when the Panthers scored four goals in the span of 7:54 as Mike Santorelli put himself on the board twice. Marty Reasoner and Stephen Weiss also helped themselves to a goal.

Capuano talked about shift changes being the source of the problem in the second period noting that the Panthers made their line changes before their players were exhausted, but that some of the Islanders were out on the ice for shifts lasting upwards of 50 to 58 seconds.

“We turned some pucks over in the neutral zone,” Capuano said. “We didn’t use the yellow or the wall when we had to, but the second period is a period where you have to win the change game the way that the game is set up. We talked about it, but we just stayed out (on the ice) too long and they capitalized.”

With the loss, Islanders goaltender Dwayne Roloson made a heartfelt comment to the media after looking back on the defeat.

“I think as a team we need to take it upon ourselves to look in the mirror and look at ourselves and see if we have done enough to win a hockey game tonight,” said Roloson. “(We need to) be on and be ready to go for the guys standing beside you and do whatever it takes to win a hockey game, whether it’s blocking shots or getting sticks in lanes or stopping a puck that is going wide.”

More of the same came from Islanders forward Matt Martin, who wrapped it up saying, “We have to end this (slide) now and everyone has to do what they do best tomorrow. We really need to grind one out and win a game.”
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