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game recap

Anders Lee powers Islanders past Avalanche

Forward has two goals in third period to give New York ninth win in 13 games

by Brian Compton @BComptonNHL / NHL.com Deputy Managing Editor

NEW YORK -- Anders Lee scored two goals in the third period, including his 20th of the season, to help the New York Islanders to a 5-1 win against the Colorado Avalanche at Barclays Center on Sunday.

Nick Leddy, Ryan Strome and Jason Chimera also scored, and Jean-Francois Berube made 26 saves for New York (25-19-10), which moved within one point of the Toronto Maple Leafs for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference. The Islanders visit Toronto on Tuesday.

"It's been a fun month-and-a-half ever since we started this run," Lee said. "We're coming from behind, and it's a position we haven't been in the last few years where we were holding on. We were in a spot almost all year the previous two. It's nice to really have the flow and the momentum of chasing other teams down."

 

WATCH: All Avalanche vs. Islanders highlights

 

Leddy, John Tavares and Johnny Boychuk each had two assists. New York has won nine of its past 13 games (9-2-2).

It was a nice response for Berube, who allowed five goals on 25 shots in a 5-4 overtime loss against the Carolina Hurricanes on Feb. 4.

Video: COL@NYI: Lee redirects PPG for his second goal

"When you have a bad game, you want to bounce back," Berube said. "It kind of took a while before I was back in net, but I think it helped me to work hard in practices and kind of go back to basics. That's what makes me successful, when I don't try to do too much."

Joe Colborne scored and Calvin Pickard made 28 saves for Colorado (15-36-2), which allowed two power-play goals and has lost the first two of its five-game road trip and three straight overall.

"For some time now, we've done a better job of staying out of the box," Avalanche coach Jared Bednar said. "Because we did that, our penalty kill started to gain some traction. But again tonight, [five] opportunities is just way too many, especially when you're playing a team that's playing real well lately and they're on their home ice. You can't give them that many opportunities."

Video: COL@NYI: Chimera slides puck through Pickard's legs

Colborne gave the Avalanche a 1-0 lead 8:12 into the game when he skated in alone after a pass from Andreas Martinsen and beat Berube with a forehand shot for his first goal since a hat trick on Oct. 15.

Leddy tied it at 12:01 of the first period when he took a pass from Stephen Gionta and beat Pickard with a wrist shot through a screen to make it 1-1. Strome gave the Islanders a 2-1 lead during a two-man advantage at 14:46 of the second period.

Lee scored two goals 10:01 apart in the third period to help put the game away. Chimera made it 5-1 with 6:12 remaining for his eighth goal in the past 15 games.

Video: COL@NYI: Leddy beats Pickard with seeing-eye wrister

 
Goal of the game

Lee made it 3-1 with his 20th goal of the season at 1:21 of the third period. Boychuk pinched in and sent a pass from near the goal line in front to Tavares, who quickly found Lee on the doorstep for a tap-in.

Video: COL@NYI: Lee bangs home a feed from Tavares in close

 
Save of the game

Berube slid across his crease to stop John Mitchell's one-timer after a feed from Blake Comeau with 3:35 left in the first period to keep it the game tied at 1-1.

Video: COL@NYI: Berube slides to snag Mitchell's one-timer

 
Highlight of the game

The Islanders made the most of a 26-second two-man advantage when Strome one-timed a feed from Tavares at the left circle for his ninth goal of the season.

Video: COL@NYI: Strome buries a feed from Tavares for PPG

 
Unsung performance of the game

Islanders center Casey Cizikas won 10 of 17 faceoffs and had an assist in 12:19 of ice time.

 
They said it

"I think we see how tight the East is. All 16 teams are in it. Two, three games can really change things in the standings, and we just want to approach it one game at a time. We've been playing some better hockey and obviously there was a [coaching] change and we just kind of kept improving. We've obviously made our games meaningful now, which is what we want so hopefully we can keep it going." -- Islanders captain John Tavares

 

"He wants to be good, he wants to be a part of it, and he's going to be. He played really well. I think the last game he had, it had been a while. I think they got a couple early on him, and I think he lost a little confidence. It's going to happen, it happens to everybody. He was a big difference in that first 35, 40 minutes today for us." -- Islanders coach Doug Weight on goalie Jean-Francois Berube

 
Need to know

Avalanche defenseman Tyson Barrie returned to the lineup after missing four games because of a lower-body injury. ... Colborne had gone 41 games without a goal. ... Leddy got his 200th career NHL point with an assist on Strome's goal. ... New York is 7-0-2 in its past nine home games.

 
What's next

Avalanche: At the New Jersey Devils on Tuesday (7 p.m. ET; MSG, ALT, NHL.TV)

Islanders: At the Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday (7:30 p.m. ET; TSN4, MSG+, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Leddy, Lee power Isles to 5-1 home win past Avalanche

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