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Apr 9, 2024 10:14 pm

Isles win fifth in a row, cool off first-place Rangers

Rangers, Islanders

Mike Reilly, Bo Horvat and Kyle Palmieri scored in the first period Tuesday night for the host New York Islanders, who maintained their grip on third place in the Metropolitan Division by holding on to beat the New York Rangers 4-2 in Elmont, N.Y.

Anders Lee added an empty-netter with 5.8 seconds left for the Islanders (36-27-15, 87 points), who won their fifth straight despite being outshot 23-12 in the final two periods and 13-4 in the third.

Goalie Semyon Varlamov made 34 saves for the Islanders, who are two points ahead of the Washington Capitals in the Metropolitan and three points ahead of the Detroit Red Wings and Pittsburgh Penguins. The Capitals, who hold the second Eastern Conference wild card, edged the Red Wings 2-1.

Chris Kreider and Adam Fox scored in the second for the Rangers (53-22-4, 110 points), who had their three-game winning streak snapped. The Rangers’ Metropolitan lead over the second-place Carolina Hurricanes fell to three points. The Hurricanes beat the Boston Bruins 4-1.

Rangers goalie Igor Shesterkin recorded 25 saves.

Shesterkin turned back a penalty shot just 85 seconds after faceoff by Mathew Barzal, who was dragged down by Adam Fox as he bore in on Shesterkin for a breakaway, before the Islanders scored three times in under 10 minutes.

Reilly was credited for the first goal at 4:12 when his shot glanced off Ryan Lindgren’s stick as Lindgren and Barzal converged in the crease. Horvat doubled the lead with 8:13 left after Noah Dobson’s shot from the blue line went off Horvat’s raised stick and fluttered over teammate Casey Cizikas’ stick.

The Islanders went ahead 3-0 in chaotic fashion just 1:51 later. Brock Nelson’s shot sailed wide, but with Shesterkin sprawled next to the net, Nelson collected the rebound and dished into the crease to Palmieri, who got ahead of Lindgren and poked the puck into the open net.

The Rangers began their comeback 7:47 into the second. Artemi Panarin waited until the Islanders’ Cal Clutterbuck and Ryan Pulock as well as Kreider were in his shooting lane and blocking Varlamov before firing a shot that went off Kreider’s stick and past Varlamov’s glove.

Dobson was whistled for delay of game to set up the power play that led to Fox’s goal through traffic with 4:59 left, when his shot went past Varlamov’s stick as he was screened by teammate Robert Bortuzzo as well as Kreider and Rangers center Vincent Trocheck.

The Rangers collected the first 11 shots in the third before Barzal fired a power play shot off Shesterkin’s glove with 6:47 left. Varlamov gloved a shot by Kaapo Kakko with 2:16 left.

–Field Level Media

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