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Pittsburgh Penguins score early to even series with New York Islanders

The Pittsburgh Penguins scored twice in the first period Tuesday, then held on behind 37 saves by goaltender Tristan Jarry to beat the visiting New York Islanders 2-1 in Game 2 of an East Division series, evening it at one win apiece.

Bryan Rust and Jeff Carter scored for Pittsburgh, the division winner. Jarry, who allowed four goals in Game 1 on Sunday, rebounded in Game 2.

Josh Bailey got the lone goal for New York, the fourth seed in the division.

Semyon Varlamov, the Islanders’ No. 1 goaltender who missed Game 1 with a lingering injury, returned with a strong effort and made 43 saves.

Pittsburgh took a 1-0 lead at 3:22 of the first. Islanders defenseman Ryan Pulock partially fanned on a clearing attempt high in his defensive zone. Rust grabbed the puck in the neutral zone and carried it to the top of the right circle. He appeared to freeze Varlamov and scored on a rising shot short side.

At 13:07 of the first, Carter upped it to 2-0, thanks to some effective forechecking by his linemates. Kasperi Kapanen flew into the left corner and beat New York’s Adam Pelech in a puck battle, chipping it over to Jared McCann behind the net. McCann, under pressure, got a backhand pass out to Carter, who moved from the left hash marks to the right hash marks and went back against the grain to whip the puck under Varlamov.

Bailey got the only goal of the second. He deftly wove through traffic from the far side of the left circle to the inner edge of it. His backhand shot flew over Jarry’s left shoulder to make it 2-1 at 14:44.

Just as in Game 1 on Sunday, the Penguins took a 2-1 lead into the third. That game, New York came away with a 4-3 overtime win.

This time, Pittsburgh held during a high-paced third period marked by chances by both clubs to take a tie series into Games 3 and 4 on Long Island.

–Field Level Media