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Former Sound Tigers Lead Islanders to 5-2 Win

          Release: 09/22/2018
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The New York Islanders topped the New York Rangers 5-2 on Saturday night as the teams met in preseason action at Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, Conn.

Former Sound Tiger Josh Bailey's three-point night (2G, 1A) paced the Isles, while Anthony Beauvillier (2G), Mathew Barzal(2A), Jordan Eberle (2A) and Parker Wotherspoon (2A) each had multi-point games. Anders Lee and Ryan Pulock rounded out the scoring for the Isles. 

The win improves the Islanders to 4-2-0 in preseason play and caps a grueling stretch of six games in seven nights. 

Josh Bailey led the way for the Islanders, scoring a power-play goal and adding a pair of assists in the win. Bailey put the Islanders ahead 2-1 with a one-timer early in the second period and his rebound popped out to Anders Lee for the eventual winner midway through the game. 

Bailey spent his second straight game on a line with Mathew Barzal and Anthony Beauvillier, a new experience for Bailey who predominantly played with Lee and John Tavares over the past two seasons. 

"Like anything it's going to take a bit of time, but so far I like it," Bailey said of his recent linemates. "We're still feeling each other out a little bit, but baby steps, that's what camp is for. Whatever our line combos end up being, I like our setup."

Beauvillier was raving about Bailey after Saturday's game, citing how easy it was to play alongside the vet. Bailey is coming off a career-high 71 points last season. 

"You guys have no idea how smart he is on the ice," Beauvillier said. "It's just so easy to play with him, he's always in the right spot and always puts the puck in the right position… He does everything right and that's exactly what we need, a leader like him taking on more responsibility."

Jordan Eberle had flanked the Barzal-Beauvillier duo for the latter half of last season, but Eberle was alongside Lee and Brock Nelson for Saturday's game.

- Anthony Beauvillier scored his first two goals of the preseason on Saturday night. Beauvillier's first was a one-timer from the high slot off a Thomas Hickey feed, while his second was a quick snap shot after some nifty stickhandling off the rush. The 21-year-old said he feels his timing returning after playing in four preseason games. 

Ryan Pulock scored his second goal in as many games, walking off the point, pulling the puck around Brandon Crawley and sniping over Dustin Tokarski's shoulder. Pulock's goal was in and out of the net before Tokarski could react and was easily the highlight of the night.

Thomas Greiss played his first full game of the preseason on Saturday, stopping 27 shots in the win. Greiss was solid, playing aggressive while moving well. His best stop came on a lunging effort across his crease to swat away a Filip Chytil one-timer and Greiss later followed it up with a poke check on Chytil's partial breakaway.

"Greisser gave us a real solid night," Barry Trotz said. "When the game was in doubt you need that one big save and he came up with that, just a Robin [Lehner] did the night before."

- Mathew Barzal picked up a pair of assists Saturday. The reigning Calder Trophy winner opened up space and a passing lane to set up a Josh Bailey one-timer to make it 2-1 and got the secondary assist on Anders Lee's cleanup effort in front of the net. 

- Devon Toews didn't find the scoresheet on Saturday night, but played a strong game nonetheless. The defenseman quarterbacked the top power-play unit and stepped up on Filip Chytil to take away a scoring chance on a Rangers shorthanded rush in the first period. Toews later broke up a 2-on-1 rush late in the third.

- The Isles power play went 2-for-4 on the night, while the Rangers went 1-for-4. 

"We've had some good structure, but we have some good people," Trotz said. "They had a real good power play last year. We're working with it right now and they are getting some concepts and are getting familiar with each other." 

- Alex Georgiev started Saturday's game for the Rangers and made 17 saves on 20 shots. Dustin Tokarski came in halfway through the contest and stopped 10 of 12 shots. 

- Peter Holland opened the scoring for the Rangers at 6:41 of the first, beating Greiss through a screen on a delayed penalty call. Ryan Spooner scored on a buzzer beater with one second left in the second period. 


After playing six games in seven days, the Islanders have three days off until they meet the Rangers again on Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden. 

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