Islanders pick up feisty Game 4 win over favored Penguins

 

The renaissance season will last at least two more games.

The Islanders return to Pittsburgh having evened the Eastern Conference quarterfinal matchup by topping the Penguins 6-4 in Game 4.

Game 5 is Thursday night at Pittsburgh’s CONSOL Energy Center.

“Anytime you play a team like that, as skilled as they are, I thought we did a great job,” head coach Jack Capuano said after the best-of-seven series was reduced to a best-of-three. “We did a lot of good things.”

John Tavares’s goal with 9:49 left was the game-winner. Tavares fired a shot that skittered under Marc-Andre Fleury’s arm and along the ice after Brad Boyes forced an Evgeni Malkin turnover in the Penguins’ end.

The goal broke a 4-4 deadlock.

The win was the Islanders’ first at the Coliseum in the Stanley Cup playoffs since April 28, 2002. The Islanders beat the Maple Leafs, 5-3, in a game remembered for Eric Cairns’s TKO of Shayne Corson.

The Islanders led twice, 1-0 and 2-1. Brian Strait opened the scoring 5:55 into the match with a 51-footer that fooled Fleury.

But as quickly as the Islanders had leads, the Pens tied the game. Forty-five seconds after Strait’s goal, James Neal tied the game at 1-1 with his first of the postseason. Evgeni Malkin tied the game at 2-2 1:02 later.

“We’ve learned areas of our game where we need to be better,” Capuano said. “The one thing about that team is that they don’t need many chances. They can strike — quick — and they did that. But I thought we responded well and you can see our guys growing.”

Brandon Sutter gave Pittsburgh its first lead of the game, 3-2, at the 11:03 mark of the second. But the Pens couldn’t grow the lead and it cost them when Kyle Okposo’s behind-the-net backhand banked off of Fleury’s pads into the cage with 1:24 left in the period.

“I knew Fleury was scrambling around. I knew there [were] a lot of bodies in front and I was trying to get it out there,” Okposo said. “Bank it off something and it ended up going off him.”

Fleury allowed all six goals on 24 shots.

“We want to get shots from everywhere,” Okposo said when asked if the Islanders were making a concerted effort to make Fleury work. “Obviously you don’t shoot too much from behind the net, but we’re trying to get pucks to the net and get bodies there.”

Pittsburgh went up 4-3 41 seconds into the third when Pascal Dupuis tipped Chris Kunitz’s centering feed past Evgeni Nabokov (27 saves). It was Dupuis’s fourth goal of the series.

Mark Streit tied the game with a shot that ricocheted off Douglas Murray’s skate at 4:30 of the third period. It was his second goal of the game, after being credited with a power-play score in the second.

“We don’t want to have to [play] ping-pong game, up-and-down,” Streit said. “We like to get the lead and play well defensively. Sometimes things just happen and they’re going to get opportunities. It’s just how you respond as a team. [You] just have to keep working and keep plugging away and work for your chances. Never give up.”

Casey Cizikas’s second of the series ended the scoring, yet there was one last pyrotechnic display as Malkin and Travis Hamonic engaged in a fight as the horn sounded which saw all 10 players on the ice get involved.

“You have to ask them,” said Hamonic, when asked why the scuffle started. “Let them think what they think. We’ll worry about ourselves. It’s the way we like to play, but you’d have to go and ask them if they’re frustrated.”

Follow NHL beat writer Denis Gorman on Twitter @DenisGorman.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Miley Cyrus hospitalized, cancels Kansas concert, condition unknown,…

Singer Miley Cyrus was hospitalized on Tuesday night after suffering what is believed to be 'a severe allergic reaction' to antibiotics medication. The 21-year-old Bangerz…

News

Explosions in new Boston Marathon bomb panic, 'twisted'…

A fresh Boston Marathon terror alert, which caused Bomb Squad officers to order an evacuation while two controlled explosions were carried out, was today being…

National

Reddit boosts news capabilities in social media turf…

By Jennifer SabaNEW YORK (Reuters) - Reddit, a website with a retro-'90s look and space-alien mascot that tracks everything from online news to celebrity Q&As,…

Local

New York joins accord to strengthen popular vote…

New York State joined a nationwide effort that would gives the state's 29 electoral votes for president to the candidate who wins the national popular vote.

Entertainment

Miley Cyrus hospitalized, cancels Kansas concert, condition unknown,…

Singer Miley Cyrus was hospitalized on Tuesday night after suffering what is believed to be 'a severe allergic reaction' to antibiotics medication. The 21-year-old Bangerz…

Television

'Orphan Black's' Jordan Gavaris talks Felix's Season 2…

Jordan Gavaris plays heroically helpful foster sibling Felix to main clone Sarah on "Orphan Black." We talked to him about what’s ahead for him in…

Going Out

Accomplice Tour: New York (Spoiler Alert)

When I signed up for the Accomplice show tour, I had no idea what I was in for. But every grimy job comes with a great reward.

Television

TV watch list, Tuesday, April 15: 'New Girl,'…

'New Girl' Nick and Jess are hiding their breakup from the other loft residents. And Winston passes the police academy exam! That guy needed some…

NBA

Nets miss chance to clinch No. 5 seed…

Nets head coach Jason Kidd expressed little concern after a 109-98 loss to the Knicks, but others seemed to disagree.

NFL

Jets confident despite Chris Johnson leaving with no…

Jets fans clamored for a playmaker on offense all offseason. It looked like they were going to land that player on Tuesday when Chris Johnson…

NBA

Knicks, Nets rivalry never materialized despite national attention

When the NBA schedule was released, the league anticipated an intense rivalry between the Nets and Knicks with all four games slated for national TV.

NBA

NBA Power Rankings: Are the Spurs frauds? Could…

NBA Power Rankings: Are the Spurs frauds? Could the Mavericks surprise?

Home

Steal home decorating tips from Nattystyle blogger Natalie…

Despite the towering ceilings and enviable exposed brick, it’s easy to see how Natalie Decleve’s apartment could be considered a challenge. Perched above the streets…

Home

How to plant a garden in the city

Small on space but big on gardening? You can still have that welcoming oasis of fresh air with an urban garden. Peter Smith, owner of…

Style

Personalize your massage at a private practice

CityTouch customizes spa treatments to meet client's needs.

Style

Victoria's Secret Fashion Show moving to England

It will still broadcast on CBS this fall.