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Vokoun stops 25 shots as Panthers defeat Islanders 3-0 to end three-game skid

SUNRISE, Fla. - Stephen Weiss can't seem to beat Rick DiPietro on penalty shots. However, a hard wrist shot from the slot did the trick Friday night.

Weiss broke a scoreless tie in the second period less than two minutes after being stopped on a penalty shot to help the Florida Panthers snap a three-game losing streak with a 3-0 victory over the New York Islanders.

Weiss, who was stopped by DiPietro in a shootout last season in Long Island, took advantage of a power play to score his fourth goal of the season.

"The same breakaway and the same move and he made the same save, so I was thinking I had to get it up and I just didn't do it," Weiss said. "It was nice to get a power play and the chance to get it back."

Nathan Horton scored another power-play goal for the Panthers, who also got an empty-netter from Olli Jokinen with 12 seconds left.

Tomas Vokoun stopped 25 shots for his second shutout of the season. It came two nights after Vokoun was pulled after giving up two goals in the first 7:10 of a 5-4 loss to Ottawa.

"We did the things we said we were going to do," Vokoun said. "We wanted to shoot a lot and we did that. We wanted to play good defensively. It was going to be a tight game. We stayed patient and kept the pressure on in the power play and that was the difference in the game."

Vokoun didn't face many difficult shots against the Islanders, although Bryan Berard did hit the post on a slap shot from the point on a power play in the third period.

The Islanders had a goal by Sean Bergenheim with 1:41 left in the third period disallowed after video review when it was ruled he kicked the puck in.

Florida outshot New York 41-25 while handing the Islanders their fifth straight loss.

"We have to take it upon ourselves, every one of us has got to look in the mirror," Islanders coach Ted Nolan said. "It might sound like a broken record, but the bottom line is we've got to work harder. If you don't work, you're going to have nights like this. Right now, we're having a lot of those."

The five-game losing streak is the longest of the season for the Islanders, who started off by winning nine of their first 13.

"We're just playing all right," DiPietro said. "We're not playing great hockey right now. We're not playing the kind of hockey we were playing early in the season."

DiPietro stopped Weiss on the penalty shot at 6:41 with a pad save after Weiss tried to beat him with a deke to his backhand. He finished with 38 saves.

"Ricky, he keeps us in every game," Nolan said. "We've got a chance with Ricky most nights, but we've also got to support Ricky. We've got to get some offence."

Weiss beat DiPietro with a wrist shot high to the glove side at 8:30, five seconds after the end of coincidental minors turned a 4-on-3 into a 5-on-4.

"I think they thought I was going to pass it," Weiss said. "I learned to just shoot the puck hard and not worry about it. Sometimes they go in."

Florida's power play came after Bill Guerin was called for boarding defenceman Bryan Allen. Guerin checked Allen before the two reached the goal line, but Allen lost his balance and slammed head-first into the boards.

Guerin immediately apologized to Allen, who left the ice after the play. Allen later returned, and he and Guerin dropped the gloves and had a fight immediately after a faceoff in the Florida zone later in the second period.

"He was pretty good about it," Allen said. "He came to me right away when he hit me. And before we fought and after we fought he was apologizing. It was a pretty stand-up move; I respect what he did. You don't want to see anyone get hit from behind, let alone yourself. I haven't seen a replay, but I'm a little surprised I wasn't more hurt."

Allen said he fought Guerin despite the first apology because he was upset at being hit from behind. Guerin, for his part, said he regretted the play.

"That was a bad hit," Guerin said. "Anything from behind, you have to call. I don't like being in those situations. It was a deserved penalty. It was a bad hit. You can't do that."

Horton made it 2-0 at 3:31 of the third period when he grabbed a rebound to the right of DiPietro and held on to the puck across the crease before hitting the open net from a sharp angle.

Notes: Vokoun's other shutout of the season came in a 3-0 victory over New Jersey on Oct. 11. ... The Panthers recalled RW Tanner Glass from AHL Rochester to replace Garth Murray, who sustained a shoulder injury in a fight Wednesday. ... Guerin, who scored five goals in his first 10 games, extended his scoreless drought to 16 games. ... Florida had been outshot in 10 of its previous 11 games.


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