UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- John Tavares, Andrew MacDonald and Thomas Vanek scored in the second period on Saturday night for the New York Islanders in their 3-1 victory over the Boston Bruins at Nassau Coliseum.
The win was the second in as many nights for the Islanders (6-5-3), who entered 0-2-1 in the second game of back-to-backs this season. New York also scored three second-period goals in a 5-4 shootout win over Ottawa on Friday.
Dougie Hamilton scored in the second period for the Bruins (8-5-0), who lost for the third time in four games and went 1-1-1 in a three-game span between Wednesday and Saturday.
Islanders goalie Kevin Poulin, making just his third start of the year, won a battle of backup goaltenders by notching 23 saves in his first victory since April 2 and his fourth career win at the Coliseum.
Chad Johnson, who was making his second start of the year for the Bruins, had 28 saves.
The game presented a clash of styles between the aggressive Islanders, who entered having scored at least three goals in eight of their first 13 games, and the defensive-minded Bruins, who allowed two goals or less in nine of their first 12 games.
The Bruins were able to dictate the flow during a scoreless first period in which the Islanders outshot Boston 9-6. But New York seized the momentum during a far livelier second period in which the two teams combined for four goals on 22 shots.
The Islanders got on the board 6:15 into the second when Vanek's shot clipped off Johnson and bounced to Tavares, who was standing in the goal mouth and batted the puck into the net.
MacDonald doubled the lead almost seven minutes later when Tavares won a faceoff in the Islanders' zone before the puck found its way to MacDonald, whose shot from the blue line sailed over the shoulder of Johnson.
The Bruins closed within one with 4:43 left when Hamilton's pass into the goal mouth snuck through a multi-player scrum and past Poulin.
But the Islanders, who blew two-goal leads in home losses to Columbus and Vancouver, needed just 41 seconds to get the goal back. Vanek capped a coast-to-coast rush by taking a pass from Kyle Okposo in stride and beating Johnson.
It was Vanek's first goal for the Islanders, who acquired him from Buffalo last Sunday, and his 30th career goal against the Bruins -- six more than he has against any other team.
The Islanders clamped down defensively in the third period when the Bruins had just 10 shots on net but no legitimate scoring chances before Johnson was pulled for an extra attacker with 1:35 left.
NOTES: The Islanders scratched LW Eric Boulton, RW Colin McDonald and D Brian Strait. McDonald has missed four games with a hip injury while Strait missed his fifth straight game with an upper-body injury. ... The Bruins scratched D Johnny Boychuck, RW Jordan Caron and LW Loui Eriksson. Boychuck didn't make the trip because of an undisclosed injury suffered during the Bruins' 5-4 shootout win over Anaheim on Thursday. Eriksson was sidelined for the fifth consecutive game with a concussion but skated Saturday morning for the first time since suffering the injury on Oct. 23. ... The Islanders have 14 more sets of back-to-back games remaining. The Bruins, who have had just two back-to-backs thus far, have 15 back-to-backs left. ... The shootout win on Friday was the first in which the Islanders never led in regulation since Feb. 7, 2012, when they beat the Flyers 1-0. ... For the Bruins, meanwhile, their shootout win on Thursday was also their first overtime game of the year -- the latest in a season the Bruins have gone without an overtime game since overtime debuted in 1982-83.