Justin Williams scored after New York Islanders goalie Robin Lehner failed on a clearing pass, giving the Carolina Hurricanes the third-period lead in a 5-2 victory in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference semifinals Wednesday night in Raleigh, N.C.
The Hurricanes lead the series 3-0, and they’ll go for the sweep in Game 4 on Friday night in Raleigh.
Williams produced his second goal of this postseason with 9:45 remaining, taking a pass from Sebastian Aho after Lehner’s flubbed pass.
Teuvo Teravainen scored twice, the second one into an empty net with 57.1 to play before Aho’s empty-netter at the 4.8-second mark. Justin Faulk also scored for the Hurricanes, who’ve improved to 4-0 in home games in the playoffs.
Devon Toews and Josh Bailey scored for the Islanders, who lost for the first time in three 2019 road postseason games.
Carolina’s Curtis McElhinney, who at 35 years and 343 days became the oldest goalie in NHL history to start a playoff game, stopped 28 shots.
Lehner finished with 33 saves.
The Hurricanes struck first on Teravainen’s first goal, his fourth of the postseason. Basically alone at the post, he tapped the puck into the empty side of the net after a cross-ice pass from Jaccob Slavin. It was Slavin’s 11th assist in the playoffs, the most by a defenseman in a single postseason in franchise history.
Shortly after, the Islanders converted with Toews’ power-play goal on a blast from the top.
McElhinney stopped Scott Mayfield’s breakaway later in the opening period.
Faulk came out of the penalty box, gloved down an alley-oop pass and and went right into a scoring move in the second period, flipping a backhand shot past Lehner for Carolina with 5:47 to play in the frame. It was the first postseason tally of Faulk’s career.
The Islanders recorded their first even-strength goal of the series following a Carolina giveaway, with Bailey converting on a wrister.
The Hurricanes had rookie right winger Andrei Svechnikov (concussion) back in action for the first time since Game 3 against Washington.
Hurricanes left winger Jordan Martinook, who has been dealing with a lower-body ailment, played for the first time in the series.
Islanders right winger Cal Clutterbuck played despite leaving Game 2 with an injury and creating speculation about his status.