Bailey’s shootout winner leads Isles over Devils

Josh Bailey scored the lone goal in the shootout, and the visiting New York Islanders claimed a 2-1 shootout victory over the New Jersey Devils on Thursday night.

Goalie Thomas Greiss made 30 saves through overtime and denied all four Devils he faced in the shootout to record the win for the Islanders, who maintain their hold on the Metropolitan Division and are on a 7-1-2 run.

Greiss has surrendered only two goals in his last four games. The Islanders swept the four-game season series against the Devils.

Devils forward Kevin Rooney opened the scoring with his second career NHL goal at 5:32 of the first period. Rooney sped away on an odd-man rush, took the pass, drove down the left wing and rifled a top-corner wrist shot from near the faceoff dot. The goal was the first allowed by Greiss in 152 minutes and 20 seconds of action.

Mathew Barzal evened the game at the 13:42 mark of the opening period with a breakaway tally. Right after Greiss made a clutch save, Ryan Pulock spotted Barzal racing away for the breakaway and threaded a pass to him. Barzal neatly made the deke to his backhand before lifting the puck into the cage for his 16th goal of the season.

From there, it became a goalie duel. As good as Greiss was between the pipes, Devils netminder Cory Schneider was equal to the task in a 27-save outing during his first game in more than a month.

Unfortunately, for Schneider, who was sidelined with an abdominal strain, he continues to look for his first win in more than a year. Schneider has posted a 0-16-3 record since last recording a victory on Dec. 27, 2017.

The Devils have just two victories in their last eight outings.

The night took a toll on the rosters, too. The Islanders lost Cal Clutterbuck early in the second period. The pesky forward clipped skates with a teammate and was favoring his foot afterward.

The Devils lost forward Miles Wood, who was tripped up in the second period and, after a short shift later, didn’t return.