NEW YORK — Trevor van Riemsdyk scored the go-ahead goal late in the third period and Scott Darling made 26 saves as the Carolina Hurricanes beat the New York Islanders 4-3 Sunday.
Van Riemsdyk’s second goal of the season came on a long slap shot with 6:49 remaining to help snap Carolina’s three-game losing streak and continue the late season swoon by the Islanders, who have just one win their last 12 games.
Jaccob Slavin, Lee Stempniak and Victor Rask also scored for the Hurricanes.
Anders Lee scored twice and Josh Bailey had a goal and an assist for New York. John Tavares had three assists and Jaroslav Halak finished with 35 saves.
Victor Rask’s goal with just under six minutes remaining in the middle period gave Carolina a 3-2 lead heading, before Lee tied it on the power play at 8:05 of the third with his second of the game and career-high 35th of the season.
The free-falling Islanders came out with virtually no energy and the Hurricanes notched two quick goals. Slavin opened the scoring at 2:50 when his shot from the point found its way through traffic and past Halak.
Stempniak, playing in his 900th NHL game, made it 2-0 at 4:44 with an unassisted goal from the high slot, his third of the season.
Bailey narrowed the deficit to 2-1 at 10:49 of the second, tipping a shot by defenceman Ryan Pulock past Darling. It was Bailey’s 18th goal this season.
Lee tied the score at 2, knocking in a rebound on the power play at 12:22 of the second. Tavares and rookie Mathew Barzal assisted. Barzal, who leads all rookies with 73 points, has 54 assists.
The Islanders are 1-7-4 in their last 12 games. They will almost certainly miss the playoffs for the second straight year after reaching the post-season three times in four years.
Carolina outshot the Islanders 13-6 in the first period and 17-11 in the second before a quiet late-afternoon crowd of 10,688 at Barclays Center. The Islanders are last in the league in average attendance with just over 12,000 fans per game.
The Islanders announced in late January they would split games between their former home — Nassau Coliseum — and Brooklyn for the next three seasons before moving into a yet-to-built arena at Belmont Park in 2021.
But they have struggled at home this calendar year, going 4-11-1 over their last 16 games at Barclays Center after as 12-3-3 start on home ice.
The Hurricanes have also slumped in recent weeks to again fall from the playoff chase in the Eastern Conference. Carolina hasn’t reached the post-season since 2009. They came into Sunday’s contest 3-9-2 over their previous 14 games.
The Islanders were coming off back-to-back losses in a home-and-home set with Washington. They started the game with Tavares unusually on left wing with Barzal at centre and Jordan Eberle on right wing.
But following Carolina’s two quick strikes, Tavares were reunited with his wingers Lee and Bailey. Tavares’ status is one of many clouds hanging over the Islanders since the 27-year-old captain could become an unrestricted free agent this July and could leave the franchise with no return.
NOTES: The Islanders scratched D Dennis Seidenberg and D Brandon Davidson, along with F Ross Johnston. … Carolina scratched D Noah Hanifin because of an upper body injury. … Carolina improved to 8-3-3 in their last 14 games against Islanders and the Hurricanes are 24-9-7 since the start of the 2008-09 season against New York.
Islanders: Host Pittsburgh on Tuesday night.
Hurricanes: Host Edmonton on Tuesday night.