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game recap

Greiss makes 31 saves, Islanders shut out Blue Jackets

Cizikas scores twice for New York, which has won four of five

by Craig Merz / NHL.com Correspondent

COLUMBUS -- Thomas Greiss made 31 saves for his third shutout in five starts, and the New York Islanders defeated the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-0 at Nationwide Arena on Thursday.

Greiss, who has four shutouts this season and 12 in the NHL, is 4-0-1 with a .987 save percentage in his past five games.

"Sometimes you're lucky, the puck bounces your way," Greiss said. "You've got to take it, hopefully go as long as [you] can.

"The boys made me look good out there, they're battling hard, a lot of blocked shots, not many rebounds."

 

[WATCH: All Islanders vs. Blue Jackets highlights]

 

Casey Cizikas scored twice, and Josh Bailey had a goal and an assist for the Islanders (34-17-6), who have won four of their past five games and are 10-2-2 in their past 14.

"We made plays when they were there. (It was) a full 60 (minute) effort," Cizikas said.

Sergei Bobrovsky made 24 saves for the Blue Jackets (32-21-3), who had won four in a row.

"Give them credit. They have the No. 1 defensive team for a reason," Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella said. "Early on, both teams played in spurts. They scored when they had chances. We had chances and didn't score."

Cizikas made it 1-0 at 7:06 of the first period on a breakaway. Cal Clutterbuck started the breakout by taking an outlet pass from Greiss before sending a stretch pass to Cizikas, who deked Bobrovsky and finished with a backhand.

Video: NYI@CBJ: Cizikas goes to backhand on breakaway

Greiss stopped a shorthanded breakaway by Josh Anderson at 8:34 to preserve the lead.

"He made a good save," Anderson said. "I thought I had an open net, but he got the blocker there."

Tortorella said, "We needed to score a goal. We had opportunities to tie it, we didn't. To give them the second goal, that really hurt us."

Cizikas scored another breakaway goal at 5:50 of the second period to extend the lead to 2-0. After Nick Foligno turned it over in New York's zone, Devon Toews sprung Cizikas with a stretch pass before he beat Bobrovsky five-hole.

"There's not too many times you get a couple of breakaways in a game," Cizikas said. "It's kind of rare so to be able to capitalize on them and get some big goals is nice."

Video: Greiss earns Thursday's Pepsi Zero Sugar Shutout

Bailey made it 3-0 at 19:19, scoring on a backhand into an open net after Tom Kuhnhackl's shot was blocked in front.

"It helps it gives you a little breathing room for sure," Bailey said. "It set us up for a good third period when we get a lead like that."

 

They said it

"There weren't any passengers tonight. Everyone was really good. The group has a lot of pride. There's great leadership. We got back to playing what we call Islander hockey." -- Islanders coach Barry Trotz

 

"We knew they were a 1-3-1. They lock it up in the neutral zone, we knew that going in. For a lot of the minutes we played into their hands for the most part and tried to do too much and get a little too cute instead of putting it behind them and going to work down low where we're successful." -- Blue Jackets defenseman Seth Jones

 

Need to know

Islanders captain Anders Lee played in his 400th NHL game, all with the Islanders, and 175th straight. … New York had lost its previous four games in Columbus while being outscored 24-6. … Columbus was 2-for-2 on the penalty kill and is 41-for-42 in its past 18 games. … It was the third time the Blue Jackets have been shut out this season. … Cizikas has three goals in two games against Columbus this season.

 

What's next

Islanders: Host the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday (Barclays Center; 7 p.m. ET; SNW, SNP, MSG+, NHL.TV)

Blue Jackets: At the Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday (8:30 p.m. ET; NBCSCH, FS-O, NHL.TV)

Video: Cizikas, Greiss lead Isles to 3-0 win in Columbus

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