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Atkinson, Blue Jackets rout Islanders in season finale

Apr 8, 2012 - 6:12 AM
Columbus, OH (Sports Network) - Cam Atkinson tallied twice in a four-goal second period for Columbus as the Blue Jackets defeated the New York Islanders, 7-3, on Saturday.

James Wisniewski and Vinny Prospal added and goal and two assists apiece for Columbus (29-46-7), which closed the year with wins in five of its last six contests.

"The goal that the players set in the last 19 (games) was to go 11-8," said Blue Jackets interim coach Todd Richards. "We were 10-8 coming into this one."

Rick Nash, Jack Johnson, and R.J. Umberger also lit the lamp for the Blue Jackets, who got 35 saves from Steve Mason.

Michael Grabner, Kyle Okposo and Milan Jurcina scored for New York (34-37-11), which lost four of its last five games.

Al Montoya allowed seven goals on 37 shots in defeat, but Isles defenseman Travis Hamonic said the loss wasn't his fault.

"We've got to clear the puck and we have to stop turning the puck over," said Hamonic. "We left him out to dry."

Already ahead 1-0 on Nash's backhanded goal late in the first, the Blue Jackets seized control of the contest in the middle stanza.

After Atkinson and Jurcina exchanged tallies within a three-plus minute span early in the period, Umberger's backhander gave Columbus a 3-1 lead a little past the halfway point of the frame.

Okposo snapped one home to pull New York within a goal, but Wisniewski and Atkinson recorded power-play goals in a 43-second span to close the period as Columbus took a 5-2 advantage into the final period.

Johnson and Prospal lit the lamp in the third before Grabner concluded the scoring with a slap shot with 3:33 remaining.

Game Notes

Columbus improved to 9-4-1 in 14 all-time meetings with New York...The Islanders finished 17-19-5 on the road, their best record since going 18-17-6 in 2006-07...Columbus was 2-for-3 on the power play, while the Islanders were 0-for-2.