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game recap

Islanders move up to second in Metropolitan with win against Jets

Score three straight goals in third period to rally for victory

by Scott Billeck / Correspondent

Islanders rally back late for win

NYI@WPG: Eberle, Cizikas rally Islanders to win

Casey Cizikas tied the game with 1:46 remaining and Jordan Eberle scored his second goal 33 seconds later to rally the Islanders to a 5-4 win

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WINNIPEG -- The New York Islanders moved into second place in the Metropolitan Division by rallying from down two in the third period for a 5-4 win against the Winnipeg Jets at Bell MTS Place on Thursday.

The Islanders fell behind 4-2 when Mark Scheifele scored his Jets-leading 36th goal at 6:46 of the third on the power play. After Jordan Eberle scored to make it 4-3 at 7:49, Casey Cizikas tied it 4-4 with 1:46 left, and Eberle scored 33 seconds later to give New York a 5-4 lead with 1:13 remaining.

"Just the mindset of our bench, you could feel it," said Eberle, who had an assist for his first three-point game since March 22, 2018. "We felt like we were going to come back. We liked the way we were playing. We were creating chances.

"This is a huge character win for the team. One of those games that kind of builds your team and moves you forward. We've got four huge games left to finish the season, and they're going to be important. I think the biggest thing is you want to finish strong."


[WATCH: All Islanders vs. Jets highlights]


The Islanders (45-26-7) are two points ahead of the Pittsburgh Penguins and three points behind the first-place Washington Capitals. Pittsburgh has a game in hand on New York and Washington.

Ryan Pulock had three assists, and Robin Lehner made 33 saves for the Islanders, who are 4-3-0 in their past seven games and were coming off a 4-0 loss at the Columbus Blue Jackets on Tuesday.

"We all know how tight it is, and we really needed a win," Lehner said. "They came out strong and they had some bounces. They're a really good offensive team. We stuck with it, stuck with it. Man, what a comeback. We needed it. This group is incredible."

Video: Dunkin' NHL Comebacks: Islanders ground the Jets

The Jets (45-28-4) failed to extend their lead for first in the Central Division. They lead the Nashville Predators by two points and the St. Louis Blues by four. St. Louis has a game in hand on Winnipeg and Nashville.

"We got a little loopy, a little careless, and they were able to capitalize," Jets captain Blake Wheeler said. "When they tie the game, we've got to be mature enough to shut the game down and get a point and time to battle it out in overtime or a shootout. We've done that a few times now. That's something we can learn from."

Adam Lowry had two goals and an assist, Brandon Tanev had a goal and two assists, and Connor Hellebuyck made 39 saves for Winnipeg, which is 5-5-0 in its past 10.

"I think we just got soft on pucks," Lowry said. "They started winning all the battles, they started keeping the puck in the zone, they were winning races to the puck, and it showed. They started to control the territory on the ice in the second, and it continued in the third.

Video: NYI@WPG: Lowry deflects home his second of the game

"We get a big power-play goal from [Scheifele], and they stuck with their game plan. They're a tough team to play against. They never quit, so you have to give them some credit. But it's certainly disappointing."

Lowry scored 13 seconds into the game after Tanev's wraparound attempt went off his skate to make it 1-0. The NHL Situation Room reviewed the goal and determined Lowry did not direct the puck into the net with a distinct kicking motion.

Lowry scored his second goal of the night to make it 2-0 at 6:11 of the first period when he tipped Jacob Trouba's point shot past Lehner.

Mathew Barzal scored his first goal in 20 games to pull the Islanders to within 2-1 at 10:19.

Tanev scored at 3:46 of the second period to give the Jets a 3-1 lead.

Anders Lee scored on a 5-on-3 power play at 6:06 to make it 3-2.

"It's probably the biggest win of the year right now," Pulock said. "Kind of coming off a tough loss and we're getting late in the year, a few games left, and we got to get those points."

Video: NYI@WPG: Barzal finds twine to end lengthy drought


They said it

"Wow. Wow. This is absolutely incredible. I know nothing is done yet, but we really needed this one. They're such a great hockey team over there, they were dangerous all night, and we scrambled together and didn't give up. It's one of the most fun wins I've had in a long, long time. So proud of this group, man. This was a huge game for us." -- Islanders goalie Robin Lehner

"A little bit of respect for the other team. And maybe not them, or just the game of hockey. But if you turn that many pucks over, that's what's going to happen." -- Jets coach Paul Maurice on what they had to do better


Need to know

Eberle has four points (three goals, one assist) in the past three games after going without a point in 11 of the previous 12 games. ... Wheeler had an assist on Scheifele's goal for his first point in five games. He is two points shy of tying his NHL career high of 91 points, set last season.


What's next

Islanders: Host the Buffalo Sabres on Saturday (Nassau Coliseum; 7 p.m. ET; MSG+ 2, MSG-B, NHL.TV)

Jets: Host the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; SN360, CITY, SNE, SNW, SNP, TVAS, NHL.TV)

Video: Islanders rally in the 3rd period to top Jets, 5-4

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