Islanders
Lightning
4 - 3 Final - OT
  for this game

Hunter lifts Islanders in overtime

Oct 17, 2008 - 4:13 AM TAMPA, Florida (Ticker) -- Barry Melrose still is waiting to enter the win column.

The veteran coach again was denied his first victory with his new team as Trent Hunter scored his second goal of the game 51 seconds into overtime to lift the New York Islanders to a 4-3 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Thursday.

Melrose, who had not coached in the NHL since 1994-95 with the Los Angeles Kings, was hired over the summer by the Lightning to turn around a team that finished with a league-low 31 wins and 71 points last season. His club overcame an early two-goal deficit in this one but failed to earn its first win in four games this campaign.

"We'll evaluate our effort in the third," Melrose said. "We kept doing it, doing it, doing it. We came back from down 2-0, 3-2. We were really battling. We need to have that effort in the third period for 60 minutes.

"It was very encouraging in the third period. There were a lot of positives. We need to feed off it and build on it."

In overtime, Frans Nielsen gained possession behind the net and dished the puck to Hunter, who put it past out-of-position goaltender Olaf Kolzig for his fourth goal of the season.

"He made a great play to pick off the pass and I was just kind of waiting in the slot," Hunter said. "He made a good pass and I was just able to one-touch it in."

After rallying from a 2-0 deficit to tie the game, Tampa Bay again fell behind when Hunter buried a backhander with 6:09 left in the third period.

"Both goals, my linemates made great plays," Hunter said. "It's just one of those things where the puck is laying there and you try to get as much as you can on it with your backhand. I was happy to see it go in."

However, the Lightning forged a 3-3 tie 66 seconds later, when Jussi Jokinen's shot went wide and bounced off the end boards to Ryan Malone, who slid the puck past goaltender Joey MacDonald from the doorstep.

"With the way things were going, to be down 2-0 going into the third, you don't know which way the team is going to go," Kolzig said. "We could have buried our heads in the sand and this really could have gotten ugly, but we dug deep and we found a way to get it to overtime. To me, that's a huge step forward."

Mike Comrie opened the scoring 2:47 into the first, blasting a wrist shot past Kolzig after grabbing the rebound of rookie Kyle Okposo's shot during a 3-on-2 rush. With 6:06 left in the second, Doug Weight doubled the lead with a power-play goal.

"It's obviously a huge two points for us, especially being up 2-0 going into the third period," Islanders coach Scott Gordon said. "We could have easily had a letdown after they tied it up 2-2, but we responded the right way."

Captain Vincent Lecavalier halved the deficit when he beat New York defenseman Brendan Witt down the ice and converted a pass from Vaclav Prospal 3:43 into the third. Prospal knotted the contest at 2-2 during a power play with 7:58 remaining in the session.

"We didn't give up, so that's a good sign," Prospal said. "Things are not going great for us. At least we got a point out of it. We have the huge last period to build on."

New York, which improved to 2-3-2 in its last seven visits to Tampa Bay, survived again without All-Star goaltender Rick DiPietro. MacDonald, who made his fourth straight start, made 33 saves.

"I thought out of our four games, this was the game where we showed the most heart," Kolzig said. "We came back from down 2-0 going into the third, down 3-2 late, and to still find a way to tie it up. We just felt like we were going to win it at some point. It's a shame the game ended on that play, but like I said, there are a lot of positives and we got a point out of it."








  • NHL
    FINAL IN OT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    NY ISLANDERS 1 1 1 1 4
    TAMPA BAY 0 0 3 0 3 FINAL IN OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYI - MIKE COMRIE 2 (KYLE OKPOSO, BRUNO GERVAIS) 2:47
    2ND PRD: NYI - DOUG WEIGHT 2 (BILL GUERIN, FRANS NIELSEN) 13:54
    3RD PRD: TAM - VINCENT LECAVALIER 2 (VACLAV PROSPAL, AN

    Oct 16 10:09 PM
  • 176
    roots
    Jamesiae Added 5 roots

    Islanders 3, Lightning 3  OT - 4:55Oct 16 10:08 PM


  • NHL
    NY ISLANDERS 4
    TAMPA BAY 3
    OT: NYI - TRENT HUNTER 4 (FRANS NIELSEN) 0:51

    Islanders 4, Lightning 3  End of OTOct 16 10:08 PM
  • 171
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    RUWTbot Added 27 roots (Overtime)

    Islanders 3, Lightning 3  OT - 4:55Oct 16 10:05 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 3RD GOING INTO OT
    1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    NY ISLANDERS 1 1 1 3
    TAMPA BAY 0 0 3 3 GOING INTO OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYI - MIKE COMRIE 2 (KYLE OKPOSO, BRUNO GERVAIS) 2:47
    2ND PRD: NYI - DOUG WEIGHT 2 (BILL GUERIN, FRANS NIELSEN) 13:54
    3RD PRD: TAM - VINCENT LECAVALIER 2 (VACLAV PROSPAL, ANDREJ MESZAROS)
    3:43
    TAM - VAC

    Oct 16 10:02 PM
  • 144
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 40 roots (Overtime)

    Islanders 3, Lightning 3  End of Reg.Oct 16 10:02 PM


  • NHL
    NY ISLANDERS 3
    TAMPA BAY 3
    3RD PRD: TAM - RYAN MALONE 1 (JUSSI JOKINEN, JANNE NISKALA) 14:57

    Islanders 3, Lightning 3  3rd - 5:03Oct 16 9:54 PM
  • 104
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 17 roots (Close Finish)

    Islanders 3, Lightning 3  3rd - 4:23Oct 16 9:54 PM
  • 87
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    RUWTbot Added 55 roots (Close Finish)

    Islanders 3, Lightning 3  3rd - 5:03Oct 16 9:54 PM


  • NHL
    NY ISLANDERS 3
    TAMPA BAY 2
    3RD PRD: NYI - (SH) TRENT HUNTER 3 (JEFF TAMBELLINI, MIKE COMRIE)
    13:51

    Islanders 3, Lightning 2  3rd - 6:09Oct 16 9:53 PM


  • NHL
    NY ISLANDERS 2
    TAMPA BAY 2
    3RD PRD: TAM - VACLAV PROSPAL 1 (MARTIN ST. LOUIS, ANDREJ MESZAROS)
    12:02

    Islanders 2, Lightning 2  3rd - 7:58Oct 16 9:52 PM


  • NHL
    NY ISLANDERS 2
    TAMPA BAY 1
    3RD PRD: TAM - VINCENT LECAVALIER 2 (VACLAV PROSPAL, ANDREJ MESZAROS)
    3:43

    Islanders 2, Lightning 1  3rd - 16:17Oct 16 9:40 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    NY ISLANDERS 1 1 2
    TAMPA BAY 0 0 0 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYI - MIKE COMRIE 2 (KYLE OKPOSO, BRUNO GERVAIS) 2:47
    2ND PRD: NYI - DOUG WEIGHT 2 (BILL GUERIN, FRANS NIELSEN) 13:54
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    NYI 10 14

    Oct 16 9:07 PM


  • NHL
    NY ISLANDERS 2
    TAMPA BAY 0
    2ND PRD: NYI - DOUG WEIGHT 2 (BILL GUERIN, FRANS NIELSEN) 13:54

    Islanders 2, Lightning 0  2nd - 6:06Oct 16 8:57 PM
  • 32
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    Islanders 1, Lightning 0  2nd - 9:53Oct 16 8:47 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    NY ISLANDERS 1 1
    TAMPA BAY 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYI - MIKE COMRIE 2 (KYLE OKPOSO, BRUNO GERVAIS) 2:47
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    NYI 10 10
    TAM 11 11
    GOALIES: NYI - JOEY MACDONALD
    TAM

    Oct 16 8:14 PM


  • NHL
    NY ISLANDERS 1
    TAMPA BAY 0
    1ST PRD: NYI - MIKE COMRIE 2 (KYLE OKPOSO, BRUNO GERVAIS) 2:47

    Islanders 1, Lightning 0  1st - 17:13Oct 16 7:47 PM