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Surging Isles drop Leafs, gain ground

Fri., April 19, 2013

NHL: John Tavares had two goals and an assist as the visiting New York Islanders rallied past Toronto 5-3 on Thursday and moved within two points of the Maple Leafs for fifth place in the Eastern Conference.

The Islanders overcame an early 2-0 deficit to win the first of five straight road games they will play to end the regular season. They improved to 13-5-2 away from home, and earned their fifth win in six games as they chase their first playoff berth since 2007.

Brad Boyes had a goal and two assists, while Matt Moulson and Frans Nielsen also scored for New York.

Cody Franson, Joffrey Lupul and Dion Phaneuf scored for the Leafs, who were solidly outshot 38-21. Phil Kessel, appearing in his 500th career NHL game, added three assists.

• Senators stop Caps’ streak at 8: Kyle Turris scored twice and the Senators ended Washington’s winning streak at eight games with a 3-1 victory over the Capitals at Ottawa.

Cory Conacher also scored and Craig Anderson made 18 saves to help the Senators win their fourth straight.

• Stars burn Canucks in third period: Cody Eakin, Jamie Benn and Ray Whitney scored goals early in the third period to break open a tie game and help the Stars cruise to a 5-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks at Dallas.

Vernon Fiddler and Erik Cole also found the back of the net and Kari Lehtonen stopped 37 shots for the Stars, who are 6-1-0 in their last seven games.

• Devils end 10-game winless streak: Martin Brodeur stopped 23 shots for his 121st career shutout to keep New Jersey’s slim playoff hopes alive with a 3-0 win over the Flyers at Philadelphia.

Ryan Carter, Matt D’Agostini and Adam Henrique scored goals to help the Devils snap their 10-game winless streak.

• Rangers drub Panthers: Rick Nash had a goal and assist in the first period, and Ryan Callahan had a pair of assists as the Rangers hung on to eighth place in the Eastern Conference with a 6-1 victory over the Florida Panthers at New York.

Rangers center Brian Boyle missed the game because of a right leg injury and is expected to sit out at least two more critical contests in the drive to the playoffs.

Hitmen top Oil Kings in WHL East opener

WHL: The Calgary Hitmen coughed up a 2-0 lead and needed a goal from Brady Brassart in overtime to defeat the Oil Kings 3-2 in the opening game of the WHL’s Eastern Conference final at Edmonton.

Brassart took the puck off the stick of defender David Musil in front and whipped the puck into the wide-open net 1:44 into overtime.

Wilcox chooses to stay at Washington

College men’s basketball: C.J. Wilcox is bypassing a shot at the NBA and returning to Washington for his senior year, giving the Huskies one more season with their leading scorer as they try to get back to the NCAA tournament after a two-year absence.

The school announced Wilcox’s decision on Thursday. Wilcox submitted his name for evaluation by NBA executives and most came back believing Wilcox would be a late first or likely second-round selection.

Robinson, McGary returning to Michigan: Glenn Robinson III and Mitch McGary are coming back to Michigan, hoping to form the nucleus of the Wolverines’ next national title contender at Ann Arbor.

Robinson and McGary put off the NBA draft to return for their sophomore seasons. Michigan has lost national player of the year Trey Burke and guard Tim Hardaway Jr. to the draft, but now the Wolverines can expect to return three starters from a team that reached the NCAA title game this season.

Aussies in contention at RBC Heritage

Golf: Jason Day and Marc Leishman kept the Australian flag flying high at the RBC Heritage.

Four days after countryman Adam Scott became the first Australian to win the Masters, Day and Leishman shot 4-under 67 and trailed leader Brian Davis by two shots after the first round at Harbour Town Golf Links at Hilton Head Island, S.C.

• Pettersen takes lead in Hawaii: Suzann Pettersen rebounded from her lone bogey with three back-nine birdies at wind-swept Ko Olina to take the second-round lead in the LPGA Lotte Championship at Kapolei, Hawaii.

The Norwegian, a 10-time LPGA Tour winner ranked sixth in the world, shot a 3-under 69 in the afternoon to reach 10-under 134. She had consecutive victories late last season in South Korea and Taiwan and won a Ladies European Tour event last month in China.

Defending champion and nine-time LPGA Tour winner Ai Miyazato was a stroke back after a 68 in the morning.

Nadal advances; Murray flounders

Tennis: Eight-time defending champion Rafael Nadal extended his Monte Carlo Masters winning streak to 44 matches by beating Philipp Kohlschreiber 6-2, 6-4 at Monaco, while second-ranked Andy Murray was routed 6-1, 6-2 by Stanislas Wawrinka in the third round.

Murray dropped serve five times and made a number of unforced errors, lasting less than an hour against the 13th-seeded Wawrinka, who had won their two only previous meetings on clay. Murray was jeered off the court.

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