UNIONDALE, N.Y. (AP) – Devon Toews scored at 1:13 of overtime to complete a stunning late-game comeback by the New York Islanders as they downed the St. Louis Blues 3-2 on Monday.
The Blues seemed to have the game well in hand in the closing minutes before Brock Nelson put the home team on the board with his third goal of the season at 14:29 of the third. Mathew Barzal then tied the game at 19:33 off a scramble in front with Islanders netminder Thomas Greiss pulled for an extra attacker.
That set the stage for Toews’ goal. Barzel and Nelson had the assists. That sent what had been a mostly silent crowd at Nassau Coliseum into a frenzy as the defending champion Blues skated off toward their locker room. Griess made 21 saves for the win.
Goals from Brayden Schenn and Vladimir Tarasenko had given the Blues at 2-0 lead.
The Blues opened the scoring at 6:48 of the first when Schenn finished off a stellar passing sequence to extend his goal-scoring streak to five games. Schenn tipped the puck past Greiss for his fifth goal this season. Defenseman Justin Faulk and forward Jaden Schwartz assisted. Schenn is tied with Ryan O’Reilly for the team lead with seven points.
Tarasenko extended the lead with a power-play goal at 5:23 of the third, his first goal of the season. Tarasenko led the Blues in goals each of the past five seasons including 33 goals last year. The Russian forward has at least 30 goals and 30 assists in five straight seasons.
The Islanders outshot the Blues 9-7 in the first but couldn’t muster much of an early attack against the Blues, who started Jordan Binnington in goal for the fifth time in six games this season. Binnington, who led St. Louis to the Stanley Cup last season as a rookie, had 29 saves.
The Blues outshot the Islanders 10-4 in the second.
The Islanders, coming off last season’s 103-point finish and a trip to the second round of the playoffs, saved all their drama for late in the game. They outshot the Blues 18-6 in the third and had the only shot in overtime.
The Islanders have played five of their first six games at home. They will visit the Jets, then Columbus later this week before returning to host Arizona on Oct. 24.
The Blues were coming off a 6-3 loss at Montreal on Saturday. They finished their four-game road trip at 2-1-1.
Forward Oliver Wahlstrom made his NHL debut for the Islanders. The 19-year-old right wing was picked 11th overall in the 2018 draft. He played for Boston College last year before joining AHL Bridgeport in the season. Wahlstrom skated on a line with Derick Brassard and Josh Bailey.
NOTES: The Islanders were without injured forwards Casey Cizikas and Jordan Eberle. … The Islanders scratched forward Matt Martin and defenseman Noah Dobson. … St. Louis scratched forwards Zach Sanford, Robert Thomas and defenseman Robert Bortuzzo. … The teams meet again Feb. 27 in St. Louis. … It was the first trip to Nassau Coliseum for the Blues since December 2014.
By ALLAN KREDA, Associated Press