Coyotes 4, Islanders 3, SO

New York Islanders goalie Nathan Lawson had quite an NHL

debut.

Not only did he experience 60 minutes of regulation action, he

also got through his first overtime and shootout, too. Although the

struggling Islanders managed one point, they couldn’t secure the

second in a 4-3 loss to the Phoenix Coyotes on Saturday night.

Kyle Turris scored Phoenix’s third goal of the shootout for the

Coyotes, who rallied late just to force overtime.

Coyotes captain Shane Doan and Radim Vrbata also scored for

Phoenix in the shootout. Martin Hanzal scored with 1:28 left in

regulation to spoil Lawson’s chance at a win.

”I just try to take it one shot at a time,” Lawson said. ”The

big differences up here are speed, and harder forechecking and

harder shooting.”

Vrbata, and Wojtek Wolski also scored in regulation, and Jason

LaBarbera made 41 saves for Phoenix in his second consecutive start

in place of ailing goalie Ilya Bryzgalov.

The Coyotes went 1-1-1 against the three New York-area teams,

and bounced back from Thursday night’s shootout loss to the

Rangers.

”We’ll take it,” Doan said.

Jesse Joensuu, Michael Grabner and Rob Schremp had goals for the

Islanders, who were looking for their second straight win following

a six-game losing streak. Lawson, recalled from Bridgeport of the

AHL earlier Saturday, made 32 saves.

”I felt really good out there,” Lawson said. ”I wasn’t

nervous at all. It was a great game until the last

minute-and-a-half.”

Phoenix grabbed a 1-0 lead when Vrbata tipped a point shot from

Doan past Lawson at 6:57 on the Coyotes’ first power play for his

seventh goal. The Islanders held a 19-8 shots advantage in the

first.

The Islanders tied it midway through the second period. John

Tavaras made a beautiful cross-ice pass to Joensuu to set up a slap

shot from the left circle that beat LaBarbera high to the glove

side.

New York took a 2-1 lead at 14:46 when Grabner, while falling,

buried a rebound of Joensuu’s shot.

Phoenix tied it at 4:03 of the third period when Wolski found a

rebound and quickly put it past Lawson.

New York went back up 3-2 at 6:22 on a power-play goal by

Schremp.

Hanzal got the Coyotes even again when he scored off a wild

bounce in front.

”When you dig yourself a hole, you have to work your way out of

it,” Coyotes coach Dave Tippett said. ”Tonight, we did.”

The Islanders had only high praise for Lawson, who got the start

because goalie Rick DiPietro was scratched due to a minor injury to

his surgically repaired knee.

”I thought he was excellent,” Islanders coach Jack Capuano

said of Lawson. ”He was our best player on the ice.”

NOTES: The Islanders have lost 19 of 23 (2-17-4). … Phoenix is

three games into a six-game trip. The Coyotes will have played

every Atlantic Division team except Philadelphia before going to

San Jose and Dallas.