A year ago it seemed like every other Golden Eagle hockey game was against the Phoenix Roadrunners. Actually it was only about every third game as the two teams became very familiar with one another in 24 meetings.
The 1990-91 season is already 10 games old, but the Eagles and Roadrunners have yet to play each other. They'll change that Wednesday night as they meet in a 7 p.m. game in the Salt Palace. It will be the first of just 16 meetings this year between the two rivals, who are tied for fourth in the Western Division with 7 points apiece.The Eagles 3-6 have lost four straight home games since opening with a 2-0 win over San Diego. Phoenix is 3-4 in two fewer games.
Eagle Coach Bob Francis is frustrated by his team's lack of victories, but isn't hitting the panic button yet.
"I think we have to get some people healthy and regroup," he said. "We have to keep a positive attitude because we've been doing some things well. We're sound defensively and I think that's the kind of team we're going to be. We're not going to be able to rely on high scoring."
Wednesday's game will mark the return of Rick Hayward, who played for the Eagles the past two seasons before being obtained by Phoenix. Last year he racked up 419 penalty minutes to lead the league and has 74 minutes already this year. It will be interesting to see how the rough Hayward treats his ex-teammates and vice versa.