Stapleton lifts Maple Leafs over Islanders

UNIONDALE, New York (Ticker) — Tim Stapleton netted the
decisive goal in the third round of a shootout Thursday, lifting
the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 5-4 victory over the New York

Jason Blake also tallied in the bonus format and Vesa Toskala
stopped 40 shots before denying one shot in the shootout for
Toronto, which won its third straight contest.

Defenseman Ian White scored a goal and set up another while
Dominic Moore, blue-liner Pavel Kubina and Nik Antropov netted
goals in regulation.

All-Star defenseman Mark Streit and Jon Sim each recorded a goal
and an assist and Sean Bergenheim and newly acquired Dean
McAmmond also tallied for the Islanders, who began a six-game

In the first round of the bonus format, Frans Nielsen’s attempt
hit the crossbar and New York’s Joey MacDonald stmyied Nikolai

Jeff Tambellini then fired a hard wrist shot past Toskala’s
glove to give the Islanders an early edge but Blake followed
with a dazzling sequence, during which he spun in the crease and
faked out MacDonald with a backhander to pull the Maple Leafs

Toskala poked away the puck before rookie Kyle Okposo even got
off a shot in the third set and Stapleton then secured the win
with a snap shot.

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White opened the scoring 87 seconds into the first period and
Moore scored shorthanded 57 seconds into the second to give
Toronto an early lead. However, McAmmond – traded by the Ottawa
Senators for Mike Comrie and Chris Campoli six days ago – halved
the deficit with 5 1/2 minutes left in the second.

Bergenheim forged a 2-2 tie at 3:30 of the third by wristing the
puck past Toskala from the low slot. MacDonald was not able to
fend off the Maple Leafs as Kubina and Antropov tallied in a
90-second span shortly thereafter.

Streit kept New York’s comeback hopes alive with 8:31 remaining
in the third, converting a wrist shot for his 12th goal of the
season. Sim capped the rally by taking a pass from Streit and
unleashing a snap shot from the left faceoff circle with 3:07

The Islanders, which had previously failed to scored three or
more goals in a game since January 29, have reached that feat
twice in row.