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Hurricanes 4, Islanders 3 (SO)

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RALEIGH, N.C. -- The Carolina Hurricanes briefly put the brakes on the New York Islanders' quest to reach the playoffs, winning 4-3 in a shootout Tuesday night at PNC Arena.

However, when the Washington Capitals beat the Winnipeg Jets 5-3 shortly after the New York-Carolina game ended, the Islanders were assured of making the postseason for the first time since 2007.

Riley Nash, on his first NHL shootout attempt, and Jeff Skinner scored in the tiebreaker for the Hurricanes.

Frans Nielsen and Brad Boyes were stopped on shootout tries for the Islanders.

John Tavares scored the tying goal for the Islanders with 1:01 remaining in regulation, but Hurricanes goalie Dan Ellis was tough in overtime and in the shootout.

Patrick Dwyer scored the go-head goal late in the second period for the Hurricanes.

Alexander Semin and Jordan Staal also scored for the Hurricanes, who've notched consecutive victories for the first time since March 9 and March 12. Carolina has won two of three games since it was eliminated from playoff contention.

Ellis, playing for the second game in a row after serving as a backup for six games, made 36 saves.

New York's Evgeni Nabokov made 29 stops.

Boyes and Josh Bailey scored for the Islanders, who were aiming for a season-best four-game winning streak.

Michael Grabner's shot hit the post in overtime in a near-score for the Islanders.

Dwyer gave Carolina a 3-2 lead with 2:15 left in the second period. The Islanders were unable to secure the puck behind the net, and with the defense shifting, Dwyer skated in for a wrist shot that made it past Nabokov.

It was Dwyer's eighth goal of the season, but only his second in the past 18 games.

Semin opened the scoring less than four minutes into the game, giving him three goals in a four-game span.

The Islanders were denied a quick equalizer when Keith Aucoin's shot off a Carolina turnover hit the crossbar. Instead, the tying goal came barely a minute later when the puck went off Boyes' skate for an Islanders goal.

Staal's goal with 3:40 to play in the first period resulted from a redirect of defenseman Jay Harrison's delivery.

The Islanders were even at 2-2 when Bailey scored off a second-period rebound. It gave him goals in consecutive games for the first time this season.

It was the first time in Carolina's 23 home outings this season that a game extended beyond regulation.

The Hurricanes secured a three-game series sweep. Carolina won twice on the road against the Islanders in February.

NOTES: The Islanders recorded at least one victory against 13 of their 14 Eastern Conference opponents this season. The lone exception was Carolina. ... The Hurricanes altered their alignments, putting winger Skinner at center on the third line. ... Hurricanes forward Jiri Tlusty, who has a team-leading 21 goals this season, played in his 200th NHL game with the organization. ... The Islanders outshot their opponents in their previous nine games. ... This was the third game of a five-game road stretch to end the regular season for the Islanders. Their next stops are Thursday at Philadelphia and Friday at Buffalo. ... The Hurricanes play their home finale Thursday night against the New York Rangers.
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