for this game

Big first period leads Islanders over Blues

Oct 12, 2008 - 3:09 AM By Doug Mitler PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

UNIONDALE, New York (Ticker) -- A spirited first period by the New York Islanders gave coach Scott Gordon his first NHL win.

Trent Hunter and Sean Bergenheim scored 93 seconds apart in the first period and Joey MacDonald stopped 24 shots as the Islanders won their fifth straight home opener with a 5-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Saturday night.

Mike Comrie and Andy Hilbert also scored in the opening session for the Islanders, who managed just one goal in a season-opening 2-1 loss at New Jersey on Friday. One night later, New York easily controlled the early play, outshooting St. Louis, 15-6, and taking a 4-1 lead after the first 20 minutes.

"The guys just jumped right into (Gordon's) system," said Islanders right wing Bill Guerin, who capped the strong showing with an empty-net goal. "The system he's implemented is something we believe in and something we feel we can win with."

The eventful opening period included a power-play goal by Hunter and a shorthanded tally by Hilbert.

All of the goals came against backup goalie Chris Mason, who made his debut for the Blues after spending the first six seasons of his career with the Nashville Predators.

"We just kind of came out flat footed," Mason said. "We just got outplayed in the first period. I would have liked to have every one of those goals back. I don't think we were ready for what they threw at us."

It was a night to savor for Gordon, who coached the last six seasons for the Boston Bruins' AHL affiliate in Providence.

"Our guys played with more urgency. Being relentless, not letting them off the hook," Gordon said. "Billy (Guerin) gave me that game puck and said, 'I hope there are many more to follow.'"

The 45-year-old did not take over as coach until mid-August, when the Islanders parted ways with Ted Nolan.

"I played for him in Providence," Hilbert said. "He worked hard to get where he's at."

MacDonald started in goal for New York for the second straight night in place of All-Star Rick DiPietro, who underwent hip and knee surgeries in the offseason. MacDonald took advantage of the early cushion, earning his first NHL win since March 27, 2007, when he was a member of the Bruins.

"I'm going to take every game like I'm playing," MacDonald said. "If that's the case, then I'll be ready."

Brad Boyes and Keith Tkachuk scored for the Blues, who defeated the Predators, 5-2, in their season opener on Friday.

Tkachuk was stopped on a breakaway by MacDonald in the second period but collected his third goal of the season midway through the third, putting home the rebound of a shot by Paul Kariya with the man advantage to make it 4-2. But that was as close as the Blues would get.

"When you lose, there aren't many positives. There is no such thing as the old college try," St. Louis coach Andy Murray said.

Comrie gave the Islanders the lead 2:18 into the contest, burying the rebound of Richard Park's shot.

With Blues defenseman Barret Jackman off for interference, Hunter gave the Islanders a 2-0 advantage when his slap shot from inside the blue line trickled between the legs of Mason and into the net. Bergenheim gave New York a three-goal cushion 93 seconds later with a wrist shot from between the circles that went off Mason's pad and in.

Boyes cut the deficit to 3-1 with his first goal of the season, but Hilbert made it 4-1, converting a pass from blue-liner Mark Streit with 46 seconds left in the first.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ST LOUIS 1 0 1 2
    NY ISLANDERS 4 0 1 5 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYI - RICHARD PARK 1 (KYLE OKPOSO) 2:18
    NYI - (PP) TRENT HUNTER 1 (DOUG WEIGHT) 13:47
    NYI - SEAN BERGENHEIM 1 (ANDY HILBERT, BRUNO GERVAIS) 15:20
    STL - BRAD BOYES 2 (PAUL KARIYA, ANDY MCDONALD) 17:23
    NYI - (SH) ANDY H

    Oct 11 9:40 PM


  • NHL
    ST LOUIS 2
    NY ISLANDERS 5
    3RD PRD: NYI - (EN) BILL GUERIN 1 (DOUG WEIGHT) 19:11

    Blues 2, Islanders 5  3rd - 0:49Oct 11 9:40 PM


  • NHL
    ST LOUIS 2
    NY ISLANDERS 4
    3RD PRD: STL - (PP) KEITH TKACHUK 3 (PAUL KARIYA, ANDY MCDONALD) 7:47

    Blues 2, Islanders 4  3rd - 12:13Oct 11 9:20 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ST LOUIS 1 0 1
    NY ISLANDERS 4 0 4 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYI - RICHARD PARK 1 (KYLE OKPOSO) 2:18
    NYI - (PP) TRENT HUNTER 1 (DOUG WEIGHT) 13:47
    NYI - SEAN BERGENHEIM 1 (ANDY HILBERT, BRUNO GERVAIS) 15:20
    STL - BRAD BOYES 2 (PAUL KARIYA, ANDY MCDONALD) 17:23
    NYI

    Oct 11 8:47 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    ST LOUIS 1 1
    NY ISLANDERS 4 4 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYI - RICHARD PARK 1 (KYLE OKPOSO) 2:18
    NYI - (PP) TRENT HUNTER 1 (DOUG WEIGHT) 13:47
    NYI - SEAN BERGENHEIM 1 (ANDY HILBERT, BRUNO GERVAIS) 15:20
    STL - BRAD BOYES 2 (PAUL KARIYA, ANDY MCDONALD) 17:23
    NYI

    Oct 11 7:59 PM


  • NHL
    ST LOUIS 1
    NY ISLANDERS 4
    1ST PRD: NYI - (SH) ANDY HILBERT 1 (MARK STREIT) 19:14

    Blues 1, Islanders 4  1st - 0:46Oct 11 7:57 PM


  • NHL
    ST LOUIS 1
    NY ISLANDERS 3
    1ST PRD: STL - BRAD BOYES 2 (PAUL KARIYA, ANDY MCDONALD) 17:23

    Blues 1, Islanders 3  1st - 2:37Oct 11 7:54 PM


  • NHL
    ST LOUIS 0
    NY ISLANDERS 3
    1ST PRD: NYI - SEAN BERGENHEIM 1 (ANDY HILBERT, BRUNO GERVAIS) 15:20

    Blues 0, Islanders 3  1st - 4:40Oct 11 7:48 PM


  • NHL
    ST LOUIS 0
    NY ISLANDERS 2
    1ST PRD: NYI - (PP) TRENT HUNTER 1 (DOUG WEIGHT) 13:47

    Blues 0, Islanders 2  1st - 6:13Oct 11 7:46 PM


  • NHL
    ST LOUIS 0
    NY ISLANDERS 1
    1ST PRD: NYI - RICHARD PARK 1 (KYLE OKPOSO) 2:18

    Blues 0, Islanders 1  1st - 17:42Oct 11 7:24 PM