Capitals Stun Islanders, 3-1, With Two Goals In 68 Seconds In Third Period; Alex Ovechkin Hits 45-Goal Plateau

Mike Stobie:Getty ImagesPhoto: Mike Stobie/Getty Images

The Washington Capitals beat the New York Islanders by a score of 3-1 on Friday night at NYCB Live/Nassau Coliseum to tie them for first place in the Metropolitan Division. Goaltender Braden Holtby made 20 saves in the win.

Capitals Lines at Islanders

The Capitals made no line changes from their last game, a 7-2 win over the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday night.

First Period

Forward Tom Kuhnackl went top corner roofing a backhand shot on a breakaway after defenseman Dmitry Orlov turned the puck over in the defensive zone to make it 1-0 Islanders 2:43 in.

The Capitals led 12-9 in shots and won 56% of the faceoffs in the first period. They had only three giveaways while New York had eight in the opening frame.

The Islanders led 16-11 in hits, 6-5 in blocked shots, and 6-0 in takeaways in the opening 20 minutes of play. They went 0-for-1 on the man advantage in the first.

Second Period

The Capitals outplayed the Islanders in the middle frame, outshooting them 7-4 in the period and 19-13 in the game. They had six giveaways while New York had 16 and won 51% of the faceoffs through the second.

The Islanders led 29-21 in hits, 18-6 in blocked shots, and 8-0 in takeaways through 40 minutes. They went 0-for-2 on the man advantage in the first two periods.

Third Period

Forward Jakub Vrana buried a rebound at the doorstep after center Nicklas Backstrom was robbed by goaltender Thomas Greiss on the initial shot to tie the game 3:26 into the period.

Captain Alex Ovechkin hit the puck with his stick blade in at the crease with his stick after Greiss knocked it to him to give the Capitals their first lead of the night 68 seconds later. The goal was his league-leading 45th of the season and he became the first player in NHL history to hit that mark in double-digit seasons.

Islanders forward Josh Bailey put the puck into his own net, which was empty, with 1:28 left after he sent it from his own blueline. Forward T.J. Oshie got credit for his 21st of the season and his third in two games.

The Capitals led 29-21 in shots, including 10-8 in the final frame. They had 12 giveaways while New York had 18 and won 56% of the faceoffs. Washington went 1-for-3 on the power-play.

The Islanders led 36-27 in hits, 25-11 in blocked shots, and 9-5 in takeaways. They went 0-for-2 on the man advantage.

The Capitals continue their three-game Metropolitan Division road trip with a stop at Madison Square Garden to face the New York Rangers on Sunday afternoon. NBC will have the coverage beginning at 12:30 PM ET.

By Harrison Brown

About Harrison Brown

Harrison is a diehard Caps fan and a hockey fanatic with a passion for sports writing. He attended his first game at age 8 and has been a season ticket holder since the 2010-2011 season. His fondest Caps memory was watching the Capitals hoist the Stanley Cup in Las Vegas. In his spare time, he enjoys travel, photography, and hanging out with his two dogs. Follow Harrison on Twitter @HarrisonB927077
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