Recap: Islanders 5, Senators 1Feb 23, 2023
William Dufour (pictured) scored twice and Reece Newkirk’s first AHL goal became the winner as the Bridgeport Islanders (23-19-7-1), American Hockey League affiliate of the New York Islanders, earned their fourth straight victory, 5-1, against the Belleville Senators (20-26-4-1) at Total Mortgage Arena on Thursday.
Twelve different Islanders recorded at least one point, including Andy Andreoff and Dennis Cholowski who earned two assists each. Grant Hutton and Ruslan Iskhakov added goals and Cory Schneider (15-5-3) made 32 saves. Schneider improved to fourth among AHL goaltenders in save percentage (.922) and shares seventh in wins.
The Islanders finished 1-for-2 on the power play and killed off all but one of their six penalty kill opportunities. Bridgeport is 1-0-0-0 against Belleville and will face the Senators for the second and final time on Mar. 24th in Ontario.
Dufour continued his recent hot streak with a bar-down wrist shot near the top of the right circle 11:59 into the first period, his 17th goal of the season. Dufour stepped over the blue line and whistled his shot above goalie Luke Richardson’s glove, who was making his pro debut for the B-Sens. Dufour now has eight points (four goals, four assists) in his last six games. Cholowski and Samuel Bolduc had the assists.
Newkirk tallied his first AHL goal just 1:29 into the second period after heading to the net on a 2-on-1 and burying Jeff Kubiak’s rebound from the doorstep. Cole Bardreau had the secondary assist.
The Islanders extended their lead to 3-0 with Hutton’s second goal of the season. Andreoff sprung Paul Thompson on a breakaway after the latter served Schneider’s high-sticking penalty, and Thompson was denied by Richardson. However, the rebound came loose, and Hutton backhanded it home at 8:13 of the second.
Bridgeport’s third goal of the period and fourth of the game was Dufour’s second of the night. Jimmy Lambert angled a brilliant lead pass up the wall to Dufour, setting up a 2-on-1 with Kyle MacLean. Dufour looked off the pass and tucked home his 18th goal of the season for the 4-0 lead. Seth Helgeson had the secondary helper.
Belleville got its only tally of the night on a power-play goal from Mark Kastelic at 13:00 of the second following Jeff Kubiak’s cross-checking penalty. The Senators dominated their third man advantage, resulting in Kastelic’s first AHL goal his season.
Islanders’ rookies continued to stuff the goal-log as Iskhakov made it 5-1 with a power-play goal of his own at 5:26 of the third. He has now scored in three straight games and has eight points (three goals, five assists) in his last four.
The four-goal difference tied Bridgeport’s largest margin of victory this season and its four-game win streak matches its longest of the year. The Islanders have scored at least five goals in three of their last four games.
Next Time Out: The Islanders continue their six-game homestand on Saturday night against the Charlotte Checkers at Total Mortgage Arena. The first 2,500 fans will take home a Storm mascot bobblehead and the Islanders will sport their new “Fisherman” third jerseys for the first time! Doors open at 6 p.m. and the puck drops at 7 p.m. The game can be seen live via AHLTV.com or heard on the Bridgeport Islanders Radio Network.