Game Seven: ECHL’s Ontario and Colorado Duke It Out


Tomorrow night we will be lucky to see a game seven in the NHL as the Tampa Bay Lightning host the Detroit Red Wings. Last night we saw the Washington Capitals defeat the New York Islanders in their game seven.

Tonight, hockey fans looking for action will have another game seven on their hands. The ECHL will see their first game seven in two seasons as the Ontario Reign host the Colorado Eagles.

The last game seven in the minor league in 2013 when the Reading Royals defeated the Florida Everblades at home 4-1 in the conference semi finals.

Neither of these teams have ever won a game seven, the 25th in the history of the young (27 year old) league. The Reign lost in a 2009 game seven to the Stockton Thunder while this is Colorado’s first appearance in the winner take all game.

“So be it. We have to find a way to win Game 7 on the road, that’s all there is to it. That’s what the doctor’s orders are now,” Colorado coach Chris Stewart said to “Winning two games at home was obviously very important for us. Our mission was to win three at home, but two gives us that chance (Tuesday), which is important. That’s what the doctor’s ordered and we have to find a way to win and give them their just medicine.”

Colorado held a 3-2 advantage in the series and hosted game six where the Reign pulled out a 2-1 victory to gain their home ice advantage back. Home teams are 16-8 all time in ECHL game sevens, so the Reign will be grateful for the opportunity. Meanwhile, Colorado blew their chance of home ice and advancing in a game six.

“Taking away the lead was hard on us; the way we gave it up was a tactical error, which was unfortunate where we were simply out of position,” Stewart said in the same article. “We had two players on the puck and when you do that you’re putting yourself into a bad situation. … They had it around the net and got the goal, and that always deflates you a little bit.”

Both Colorado and Ontario play in the same division, the Pacific Division of the western conference. This is Ontario’s last year in the league before the city gains an American Hockey League team as an affiliate of the Los Angeles Kings.

Ontario finished second overall in the division with 96 points, and the Eagles were right behind them in third with 90 points. The other divisional round pitted the Utah Grizzlies against the lower seeded Idaho Steelheads. The Grizzlies took the series in six games.

The other wrapped up series saw the Allen Americans defeat the Tulsa Oilers, Fort Wayne Komets over the Kalamazoo Wings, and Florida Everblades over the Orlando Solar Bears.

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