New York, NY - The New Jersey Devils (16-29-3) defeated the Florida Panthers by the score of 5-2 in hockey action on Sunday afternoon. Leading New Jersey to victory was ‘The Sniper’ Ilya Kovalchuk, who had a goal and two assists in the game.
Kovalchuk struck for the first Devils goal at the 4:20 mark, netting a 16 foot tip-in shot that was assisted by Andy Greene (15) and Travis Zajac (19). Before the horn would sound to end the second period of play Jason Arnott (11) tallied a 14 foot backhanded shot, which was assisted by Adam Mair (1) and Mark Fayne (3) for the 2-0 Devils lead.
Florida would strike for their first goal at the 7:22 mark of the second period as Shawn Matthias (6) would record a 19 foot wrister, that was assisted by Cory Stillman (12) and Steve Bernier (7) to cut the Devils lead to 2-1.
New Jersey would add on to their lead in that frame as Brian Rolston (5) netted a wicked 57 foot slap shot, on the power play opportunity. The Devils third goal of the game was set up by Kovalchuk (14) and Mattias Tedenby (7) for the 3-1 lead.
Patrik Elias (13) would add to that lead at the 17:19 mark, on another power play opportunity, as he tallied a 24 foot wrister to make the score 4-1. The Devils also held the shots advantage by a tally of 17-14 at the end of the second period of play.
The Panthers once again cut into the Devils lead at the 5:56 mark as Marty Reasoner (10) recorded a 11 foot wrister, which was set up by Radek Dvorak (10) and Cory Stillman (13) making the Devils lead 4-2. New Jersey would seal their victory at the 18:13 mark as Jason Arnott (12 ) tallied an empty net 46 foot shot, which was assisted by Rod Pelly (4) and Henrik Tallinder (6) for the eventual 5-2 victory.
New Jersey will have a day off before heading to Detroit for a 7:30 p.m. face-off with the Red Wings on Wednesday night.