|Date of game: 4/10/2015
Recap: Pittsburgh vs. NY Islanders
Pittsburgh, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Pittsburgh's playoff hopes will come down to the final day of the season.
Jaroslav Halak posted 37 stops while John Tavares, Casey Cizikas and Michael Grabner all scored to lead the New York Islanders to a 3-1 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday.
Pittsburgh still controls its destiny as the team is a point ahead of Boston for the second wild card spot in the Eastern Conference. Pittsburgh closes out its regular season in Buffalo on Saturday, while Boston plays in Tampa Bay.
The Islanders, meanwhile, came into the game having secured a playoff berth, and with 100 points are just one back of the Washington Capitals for second place in the Metropolitan Division. The Islanders host the Blue Jackets on Saturday, while the Capitals host the Rangers.
"Jaro came up big for us, especially in the first," said New York head coach Jack Capuano. "He made three or four tremendous saves to keep the score what it was."
Marc-Andre Fleury made 23 saves and Rob Scuderi had the only goal of the game for the Penguins, who have lost five straight.
The Islanders took a 2-1 lead 2:46 into the third when Brian Strait fired a shot on net from the left point that Kyle Okposo tipped on net. Fleury made the stop, but the rebound came to the right side and a wide-open Tavares had an easy look for his 37th of the season.
Any thoughts the Pens had of rallying were dashed when Grabner flew in down the left wing and snapped a wrister over the glove of Fleury with 3:40 to play.
The Penguins nearly took a 1-0 lead with 12:08 to play in the first on the power play as Patric Hornqvist got a wraparound on net from the right side. The call on the ice was no-goal, and the replay appeared to show that the puck had crossed the goal line as it popped on to the glove of Halak, but there wasn't enough evidence to prove whether it did cross, and the no-goal call was upheld.
To add insult to injury, the Islanders scored just eight seconds later when Cal Clutterbuck hit Cizikas with a lead pass and he shot it just under the crossbar for his ninth goal of the year.
"I think anytime you use four forwards on the PP, there is a potential for that to happen," said Pittsburgh head coach Mike Johnston.
Fleury did his part to keep the Pens in the game as he made a beautiful glove save on a Thomas Hickey shot from the right wing off a shorthanded 2-on-1 just under seven minutes into the second.
Pittsburgh paid off his hard work late in the period when Scuderi blasted in a shot from the left circle with just 5.7 seconds left in the middle frame to send the game into the third tied.Game Notes
Pittsburgh went 19-13-8 on the road this season ... Pittsburgh was 0-for-2 on
the power play, while New York was 0-for-1 ... It's the first time since the
1983-84 season that the Islanders have topped 100 points ... Tavares is tied
with Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby for the NHL lead in points with 84.