Islanders defeat Devils to earn 3rd straight win

Anders Lee scored twice and Jordan Eberle netted one goal and one assist as the host New York Islanders claimed a third straight victory by beating the New Jersey Devils 4-1 on Thursday night.

Goalie Robin Lehner only needed to make 16 saves for the Islanders, who have won 10 of 12 outings while pushing up the Metropolitan Division. New York is just one point back of the Columbus Blue Jackets and Washington Capitals for top spot in the division.

Lee opened the scoring with New York’s first shot on goal 5:48 into the first period. Lee set up shop in front of the net to set the screen and deflected Nick Leddy’s point shot.

Michael Dal Colle, the Islanders’ 2014 first-round draft choice, doubled the lead with his first career NHL goal at 9:19 of the opening frame. Dal Colle, who was chosen fifth overall in the draft and played his 14th game, tipped Scott Mayfield’s point shot for the milestone marker. It was just New York’s third shot on goal.

Eberle made it 3-0 with a power play goal at 15:12 of the first period — the second time in three games that the Islanders have scored three goals in the opening frame. Eberle, playing the point with the man-advantage, worked his way down to the slot with the puck after receiving the pass and rifled a glove-side top-corner shot for his 11th goal of the season.

Lehner’s shutout bid was spoiled by Andy Greene at 7:07 of the third period. In keeping with the theme of the night, Greene cruised through the slot when he deflected Damon Severson’s point shot for his third goal of the year.

Lee rounded out the scoring with an empty-net goal with 2:09 remaining for his team-high 18th tally of the season

Mackenzie Blackwood stopped 22 shots for the Devils, who have lost two straight outings.

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