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Barzal Scores First Two Goals of Season, But Islanders Fall 5-2 to Stars

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New York Islanders

DALLAS– The New York Islanders dropped their second straight game as they fell 5-2 to the Dallas Stars on Saturday night. It was a strong start against the best first team in the NHL, but sloppiness in the second and third allowed the Stars to eventually take control.

The Islanders are now 11-8-0 on the season.

LINES:

Zach Parise-Mat Barzal-Oliver Wahlstrom
Anders Lee-Brock Nelson-Anthony Beauvillier
Josh Bailey-Jean-Gabriel Pageau-Kyle Palmieri
Matt Martin-Casey Cizikas-Cal Clutterbuck

Alexander Romanov-Noah Dobson
Adam Pelech-Ryan Pulock
Sebastian Aho-Scott Mayfield

Semyon Varlamov
Ilya Sorokin

SCORING

Mathew Barzal gave the New York Islanders a 1-0 lead at 1:30 of the second period for his first goal of the season as he deflected an Alexander Romanov wrist shot over the blocker of Dallas Stars netminder Jake Oettinger.  Romanov and Oliver Wahlstrom were credited with the assists.

Radek Faksa tied the contest at 6:57 of the second period as he beat Semyon Varlamov from the low slot for his second goal of the season. Tyler Seguin and Jamie Benn were credited with the assist. Seguin notched career point number 700.

Barzal scored his second of the contest, this time on the power play, as he beat Oettinger low glove side at 14:19 of the second. Brock Nelson and Anders Lee were credited with the assists on Barzal’s second of the season.

Mason Marchment tied the contest at two at 14:59 of the second as Benn found him all alone at the back post for his sixth of the season. Benn and Collin Miller were credited with the assists.

Benn scored his eighth of the season to give the Stars a 3-2 lead at 8:17 of the third period as he roofed a backhand over Varlamov’s blocker after a strong pass from under the goal line by Marchment. He and Seguin get credit for the assists on the go-ahead goal.

Jason Robertson gave the Stars a 4-2 lead at 16:27 of the third to extend his point streak to 11 games. After a Joe Pavelski offensive zone face-off win, Robertson spun around and beat Varlamov low blocker side for his 12th of the season.

Jani Hakanpaa scored on the empty net at 19:39 of the third for his third of the season to give Dallas a 5-2 lead. Oettinger got the lone assist.

Barzal Pots First Two Goals of Season

It had been 203 days since New York Islanders forward Mathew Barzal scored a goal heading into the contest against the Dallas Stars. Barzal was not pointless, as he had recorded 19 assists amongst the league leaders entering the night.

After Oliver Wahlstrom won a board battle along the left boards in the Stars zone, he fed defenseman Alexander Romanov at the top of the left circle. Romanov shot the puck quickly, and Mathew Barzal, who was in the low slot, was able to deflect the puck over the blocker of Starts netminder Jake Oettinger for his 20th point of the season.

And then, while the Islanders were on their third power of the game, Barzal beat Oettinger low glove slid from the slot for his second goal of the game.

That gave Barzal 21 points in 19 games.

He left the contest with his first two goals of the season as he gave the Islanders the lead early in the second and then the lead towards the end of the middle frame. The Stars tied the game both times.

Much Stronger Start Than in Nashville

Despite taking two penalties in the first period and being outshot 13-9, the New York Islanders got off to a much better start than we saw against the Nashville Predators on Thursday.

They got in on the forecheck early and notched the first five shots of the contest. They clogged the lane in the defensive zone, staying structured, which helped for stronger transitions.

Of the 13 shots they allowed, five came on the power play. Two of the five were considered high danger.

Sloppy Second Half

The New York Islanders took the lead twice in the contest, but lackadaisical play and a struggle to play their game led to two Stars comebacks before the end of the second period. And then the Stars played their game in the third, exposing the Islanders a few times as they fell 4-2.

After each goal, it seemed the Islanders took their foot off the gas, although captain Anders Lee disagreed. He also disagreed that the Ryan Suter goal-line save took the wind out of their sails:

I don’t think it takes the air out. It’s a f-n tight game. You don’t lose air because they score a goal,” Lee said. “That’s not how you feel on the bench. That’s not how so how you feel on the bench.”

“We feel like, alright, now we got to find a way to tie this thing up, and you know, we didn’t come up with that tonight, but no, that’s not how we felt.”

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