Islanders Fight Back, But Lose in Shoot-Out

November 15, 2009

Playing in their third game in four nights, the Islanders showed grit and toughness in erasing a 4-2 third period deficit, but ultimately fell to the Panthers in a shoot-out.  It was the Islanders NHL leading 11th overtime game, and they were able to earn a point in their third straight road game. 

It was another strong start for the Islanders, who have scored 11 first-period goals in the past four games.  Tim Jackman gave the Isles the lead with a birthday goal just 16 seconds into the game.  Panther’s goaltender Tomas Vokoun entered the game with three shutouts in his last four starts, but did not look good early.  Josh Bailey set up the Islanders second goal, connecting with Trent Hunter who roofed one to the corner of the net to give the Islanders a 2-0 lead. 

The 2nd period wouldn’t be as kind to the Isles, as the Panthers scored three goals to take a 3-2 lead.  It was the third consecutive game the Islanders gave up three unanswered goals throughout the course of the game.

The Panthers seemed to put the nail in the coffin when Michael Frolik scored a power play goal three minutes into the third, leaving the drained Islanders facing a two goal deficit.  The tide would turn however when it was New York’s turn to go on the power play, as rookie sensation John Tavaras put a rebound passed Vokoun with 12 minutes to go in the third.  Tavares would then win a key faceoff five minutes later, and Kyle Okposo netted another power play goal to tie the game at 4.

After some back and forth action in overtime, the game went into a shoot-out.  The Panthers shot first, but Rostislav Olesz couldn’t sneak one passed Dwayne Roloson.  Frans Nielsen would give the Islanders the edge, but no other Isle could score in the shoot-out.  The Panthers won on a beautiful goal by Nathan Horton, giving Florida a 5-4 victory.  The Islanders fell to 7-6-7 on the season. 

“When we get a lead I think we just get a little lacksadaisical,” said John Tavares, who contributed a goal and an assist in the third period. “When a team is down, especially at home, that’s when we need to bear down.”

The Islanders will resume their road trip Tuesday against the Boston Bruins.  Game time is 7pm.

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