Eagles Drill the Oilers

Feb 222007
Authors: Adam Bohlmeyer

Four days after suffering one of the most lop sided loses in team history, the Colorado Eagles took out their frustration on the Tulsa Oilers.

The Eagles (37-12) defeated the Oilers (20-21-7) on Wednesday night, dominating the game as seven different players reached the back of Tulsa’s net.

Seth Leonard scored three first period goals leading Colorado to a 9-1 victory. Centers Riley Nelson, Ed McGrane and Chris Hartsburg; defenseman Aaron Schneekloth and Jay Birnie; and right wing Scott Polaski also had goals for the Eagles. Birnie’s score marked the first of his career.

Eagle’s goalie Paulo Colaiacovo put in a solid effort, letting the puck pass him once.

Leonard was pleased with the way Colorado responded after losing 9-5 to the Bossier-Shreveport Mudbugs the previous Saturday.

“We knew we had to redeem ourselves after last game and I thought we did a good job of that,” Leonard said on 107.9 the Bear after the game. “All around everybody played well. It was just fun out there.”

Colorado has been playing with a short bench as of late, but are slowly getting players healthy again. The Eagles welcomed defenseman Les Borsheim back from injury for Wednesday’s game and more help is expected soon.

Right wing and Eagles captain Greg Pankewicz is expected to return to the ice in the middle of March. Pankewicz was sidelined after only playing 11 games this season. Before the injury, the 16-year pro had scored 18 goals, which lead the CHL at the time.

Up next for the Eagles is a three game road trip. This weekend Colorado heads to the desert for back-to-back games with the Arizona Sundogs. The Eagles have had success against the Sundogs, wining four of five games so far this season.

The Sundogs (24-24-1) are currently ranked fifth in the CHL’s southern conference. Arizona has been on a hot streak, winning their last four games.

Colorado has a tough road ahead, playing 11 of their remaining 15 games on the road. During this time the Eagles plan to focus on capturing home ice advantage for the playoffs.

“Having home ice advantage with the fans we have is huge,” Leonard said. “When we are on the road we have to get as many points as we can and stay in first place.”

Although the Eagles remain atop the CHL point wise, they were booted from the top spot in the coach’s poll this week by Bossier-Shreveport. This marks the first time since Dec. 7 Colorado has not held that spot.

Eagles beat reporter Adam Bohlmeyer can be reached at sports@collegian.com.

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