It had been nearly a year since the Colorado Eagles had played at the Budweiser Events Center when they triumphantly returned to the Loveland home ice Wednesday (Feb. 24).

The typically raucous atmosphere was replaced with pumped-in crowd noise as the empty arena isn't yet approved to host large groups of fans. It was the first time the Budweiser Events Center had hosted a regular season Colorado Eagles game since March 11, 2020 from before the pandemic had canceled the AHL season last year.

"We are blessed with such a loud building, so it was really unusual to walk out and see no fans here," said Eagles head coach Greg Cronin in his postgame press conference. "It is something we have had to deal with already.

"But it is always a different feel when you play at home and we really started with a lot of energy."

That energy of being home led to a productive five-point series against the visiting Tucson Roadrunners. The Eagles, the AHL minor league team of the Colorado Avalanche, had a 3-1 win Wednesday (Feb. 24), a 4-3 OT loss Friday (Feb. 26) and a 1-0 win on Saturday (Feb. 27) over the Arizona Coyotes farm team.

The play helped the Eagles rebound from a tough five-game, season-opening road trip that featured stops in California and Canada. The Colorado Eagles had only collected three points in those first five games.

Goalies Stay Strong in Net

Strong goalie play contributed to the two victories over the Roadrunners.

Hunter Miska stopped 25 of 26 shots in the net for the Colorado Eagles in the Wednesday opener that proved to be a perfect NHL tune up.

Miska was then recalled by the Avalanche, where he collected his first career NHL victory in a 3-2 win over the Arizona Coyotes on Friday (Feb. 26).

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“I thought (Miska) looked really good for the bulk of the game,” Avalanche coach Jared Bednar told the Denver Post. “Then he got caught out of the net a couple of times at the end. He looked like he got nervous, ready to get a big win, and just got a little ahead of himself. … He didn’t get a lot of shots, but everything he had, he handled it clean. He looked composed.”

Colorado Eagles goaltender Trent Miner then stopped all 20 shots he faced in Saturday's 1-0 shut out win.

Colorado Eagles Drive-In Game This Week

Missing the experience of live hockey? The Colorado Eagles will look to recreate that wonderful atmosphere soon in a new, socially-distant way, as the team announced it will host a drive-in watch party at the Holiday Twin Drive-In in Fort Collins.

Tickets are now on sale for the March 6 game against the Henderson Silver Knights. General admission tickets are $11.50 per person. Children 3-10 get in for $7 and children under 2 get in free.

Fans will be able to turn their car radio to a special FM channel to listen along while watching on the big screen. Food, beverages and alcohol will be available for purchase.

Games This Week

  • 7:05 p.m. Friday, March 5 vs Henderson Silver Knights
  • 7:05 p.m. Saturday, March 6 vs Henderson Silver Knights

The Eagle's Nest Notebook is a weekly Monday look at the Colorado Eagles professional minor league hockey team. The Eagles are affiliated with the NHL's Colorado Avalanche.

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