Colorado Eagles find victory on the road after holiday break


The Eagles have performed well on the road. Struggling to find a victory on home ice against the Calgary Wranglers on Dec. 22 and Dec. 23, the game against the Iowa Wild was the perfect stage for redemption.

A refreshed approach from the holiday break was a needed change for the roster. Colorado had their fair share of struggles carried forward from their home stand, but plenty of adjustments contributed to a successful showing.

With a 42 victory over the Iowa Wild, the Eagles got back on the right track.

First period

Though originally off to a slow start, Colorado jumped on the board early when Riley Tufte used a rebound to tilt the scoreboard in their favor at the 8:25 mark.

However, a win wouldn’t come easy and the Wild put up their own goal and tied it up at one.

15 minutes into the game, Callahan Burke took a hard hit. He was slow to get up and went down the tunnel, and Tufte jumped to his defense. Rather than a penalty being assigned to the Wild, Colorado was put on the penalty kill for a roughing penalty.

It wasn’t long before a second goal was on the board, and it wasn’t favoring the Eagles. An unsuccessful penalty kill left the Eagles at a one-point disadvantage going into the second frame.

Second period

The Eagles came back onto the ice, appearing sluggish. Throughout the season, it is not uncommon for Colorado to have trouble bouncing back after setbacks.

Ondrej Pavel’s successful penalty shot to tie the game at two marked the turning point. From that point on, there was a completely different team on the ice. The aggression picked up, offensive pressure increased, and there were results.

Though the efforts didn’t result in a goal, the numbers showed a favor towards the Eagles. During the second period alone, Colorado outshot the Wild 13 to seven.

Going forward, it was clear penalties needed to be cut down and the effort level needed to stay the same.

Third period

The Eagles accomplished exactly that. Without recording a single penalty and with the same energy in the scoring zone, the Eagles accomplished exactly that, finally being rewarded for their efforts.

Burke broke through first, tallying his fourth goal of the season. Tufte picked up the assist, marking his second point of the night. Now in the lead, the team showed confidence and grit to secure the win.

But for Ivan Ivan, a one goal lead simply was not enough. He added his own goal to the board with help from Jack Ahcan, sealing the fate of the Wild on their home ice. The Eagles dominated Iowa in the last period, putting up 15 shots on goal, 11 more than their opponent.


Justus Annunen picked up his eighth win of the season. Taking some time off because of injuries showed in the home series against the Calgary Wranglers, but this victory shows he is just as solid in the net as he was before the break. He fended off 17 of 19 attempts.

The team’s commitment to play is evident in the score. The victory and attempts on the goal are a breath of fresh air from their back-to-back losses against the Wranglers.

The one notable area for improvement is penalties. The roster collected five penalties, one of which resulted in a goal. Allowing teams an advantage can cost a game, which is not the first time the Eagles have found a defeat.

The two teams will face each other again on Saturday, Dec. 30.

About Savvy Rafkin

Savvy is a recent Journalism and Media Communication graduate from Colorado State University. She spent most of her life playing softball and being surrounded by sports. As she entered college, she found her passion for sports writing and joined the Colorado State University Athletic Communications team. Later, she became a beat reporter for high school sports in northern Colorado.


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