EditorsNote: adds quotes, other minor edits
The Carolina Hurricanes scored three goals in the first nine minutes of the second period, taking control of Game 4 on the way to a 5-2 victory and a sweep of the visiting New York Islanders in the Eastern Conference semifinals Friday night at Raleigh, N.C.
Teuvo Teravainen, Sebastian Aho, Greg McKegg, Justin Williams and Andrei Svechnikov registered goals for the Hurricanes, who needed seven games in the first round with the Washington Capitals but made this much smoother.
Justin Faulk notched two assists while Aho and Teravainen each posted an assist.
Carolina goalie Curtis McElhinney, filling in again for injured regular Petr Mrzek, made 26 saves.
Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour said of McElhinney, a 35-year-old veteran who had never started an NHL playoff game before Wednesday, “I don’t care if you like our team or not, everybody cheers for that guy. He has put in his dues, put in his time.”
The Hurricanes, who have won six straight games, will have time off before the conference finals as they await the winner of the Columbus Blue Jackets-Boston Bruins series, which is tied 2-2.
Carolina improved to 5-0 in postseason home games, with a franchise-record crowd of 19,495 for Game 4. The Hurricanes would hold home-ice advantage for the next round if their next opponent is Columbus.
Teravainen said, “It’s so exciting to play (here). I feel like it’s tough for other teams to come here now. We play every game like we’re going to win the game.”
The Islanders opened the playoffs with a sweep of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Now they know how it feels on the other end. They had been 5-1 all-time in Game 4s when trailing a series 3-0.
Mathew Barzal opened the scoring for the Islanders, but there were few other positives for New York. The other goal came from Brock Nelson with 1:09 remaining. Devon Toews assisted on both goals.
Islanders goalie Robin Lehner was pulled after allowing the third goal early in the second period, having faced 11 shots. Thomas Greiss finished, stopping 8 of 10 shots.
The Islanders were on a power play just 73 seconds into the game after Svechnikov’s high-sticking penalty. Barzal converted for a goal.
The Hurricanes pulled even slightly more than two minutes later with a power-play goal when the puck was knocked off the stick of New York’s Adam Pelech.
Aho was credited with Carolina’s first goal, ending the team’s 0-for-23 stretch on power plays. There had been seven games without a power-play tally for the Hurricanes.
The Islanders held a 10-6 edge in first-period shots.
Teravainen’s sixth goal of the postseason came just 2:11 into the second period. McKegg poked in a rebound 66 seconds later for his first playoff goal.
As the Hurricanes were pouring it on, Williams’ goal gave him 100 career playoff points.
Islanders right winger Cal Clutterbuck, who was questionable for Game 3 but still played, was scratched from the lineup Friday night.
Islanders coach Barry Trotz, who led the Capitals to the Stanley Cup championship last year, said, “We don’t fault anybody. We just take it as a team.”
—Field Level Media