RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Anders Lee had a goal and two assists to lead the New York Islanders to a 5-4 win over the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday night.
Ilya Sorokin stopped 36 shots for the Islanders (16-8-9), who head into the Christmas break with at least a point in 11 of their past 12 games.
“Any time you go into a break you want to be feeling good,” said Lee, the Islanders’ captain. “To get two points going into the break, get a few days rest and enjoy some family time is really nice. We will get back at it in a few days.”
Lee has nine goals in the past 18 games after starting the season with one goal in the first 15 games.
“He has stepped up,” Islanders coach Lane Lambert said. “Like I said before when he wasn’t scoring, I did say it was only a matter of time.”
Brock Nelson, Bo Horvat, and Mike Reilly each had a goal and assist, and Sebastian Aho had a goal for the Islanders. Kyle Palmieri and Mathew Barzal had two assists each.
“We played a full 60 minutes,” Lee said. “To beat this team you have to have everyone going and we really did.”
Stefan Noesen, Jaccob Slavin, Sebastian Aho, and Teuvo Teravainen scored for the Hurricanes, who lost for the fourth time in five games. Martin Necas and Andrei Svechnikov had two assists each for Carolina.
Pyotr Kochetkov had 23 saves. He struggled in net for Carolina, which has been a season-long problem for the Hurricanes.
With starter Frederik Andersen out since Nov. 2 with a blood-clotting issue, the Hurricanes have had to rely on the 24-year-old Russian. Kochetkov had played better recently but floundered on Saturday.
“We’re probably riding him a little too much,” Carolina coach Rod Brind’Amour said. “You could tell he wasn’t as good as he has been and that’s probably the difference, right?”
Lee’s goal at 3:44 in the third period, to give New York a 5-3 lead, from an odd angle was one of the shots Kochetkov would have liked to have back.
Noesen scored a power-play goal at 9:17 to cut New York’s advantage to 5-4. Carolina went 2 for 4 on the power play but it wasn’t enough to keep up.
The Islanders had a 3-1 lead after a hectic first period.