BOSTON (AP) — Bruins forwards Charlie Coyle and David Pastrnak were racing toward the empty Islanders net, with one New York defender trying to keep up.
Coyle, who already had two goals on the night and has never had three in an NHL game, slid it over to Pastrnak. Pastrnak passed up the open shot and slid it right back to Coyle.
“He was screaming, ‘Shoot!’” Coyle recalled after registering his first career hat trick in Boston’s 5-2 win over the Islanders on Thursday night. “He was tired. I backhanded that over and he was kind of like, ‘What are you doing that (for)?’ But I’m glad it worked out.”
Coyle added an assist for his first four-point game since 2016, and Linus Ullmark made 27 saves for the Bruins. Pastrnak had a goal and two assists and Trent Frederic also scored for Boston to help the defending Presidents Trophy champions earn their 11th victory in their first 13 games.
They ended the night tied with Stanley Cup champion Vegas for the most points in the NHL, with 23.
A 13-year NHL veteran playing in his 798th career game, Coyle scored a power play goal in the second period on crisp passing from Pastrnak to Pavel Zacha to Coyle, in the slot. He added a second score to make it 4-2 midway through the third period, crashing the net to receive the pass from James van Riemsdyk.
The hat trick came with 1:21 left and Islanders goalie Ilya Sorokin off for an extra skater.
“In a sense it kind of feels like getting your first goal out of the way,” Coyle said. “Those are milestones you kind of think about, but you never really focus on that stuff, honestly. Sometimes it just pans out like that.”
Simon Holmstrom scored a short-handed goal for New York 10 seconds after the faceoff to open the power play, tying it at 2 early in the third period. But Pastrnak gave the Bruins the lead with a wrist shot that squirted through Sorokin’s pads.
The Boston scoring leaderr had no interest in a second goal Thursday.
“That’s why I love working with this team,” Bruins coach Jim Montgomery said. “To see Pasta waving at him, like ‘Go to the net! I’m going to give it back to you for the hat trick.’ They’re incredibly unselfish and thoughtful people and it shows in the way they love playing for each other.”
Brock Nelson also scored and Sorokin stopped 30 shots for the Islanders. They have lost three in a row.
The Bruins were without top defenseman Charlie McAvoy, who was serving the final game of a four-game suspension for head hit on Florida’s Oliver Ekman-Larsson.
Islanders: Host Washington on Saturday night.
Bruins: At Montreal on Saturday night.
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