Eagles claim Taylor Trophy as Western Conference champions

The Colorado Eagles won the Bruce Taylor Trophy as ECHL Western Conference champions on Saturday with a 6-3 win over the Toledo Walleye in Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals.

Colorado advances to the 2017 Kelly Cup Finals where it will meet the winner of the Eastern Conference Finals between Manchester and South Carolina. The Stingrays lead that series 3 games to 2 with Game 6 set for Monday at Manchester.

Trailing 3-1 midway through the second period on Saturday, the Eagles reeled off four consecutive goals to take control of the game. Cam Maclise scored a pair of goals while Matt Register (3a), Ryan Harrison (2a) and Jake Marto (2a) all had multi-point games as well.

Register led Colorado in the series with eight points (1g-7a) while Alex Belzile, who leads all players in the postseason with 24 points (14g-10a), scored a team-best four goals in the series. 

The trophy is named in recognition of Bruce Taylor, who was the founding father of the West Coast Hockey League. In the early 1990s, Taylor purchased teams in Fresno, Reno and Bakersfield and in 1995 joined them with teams in Anchorage, Fairbanks and San Diego to form the West Coast Hockey League. The Taylor Cup was presented to the playoff champion in the WCHL from the league’s inaugural season in 1995-96 until the league ceased operations following the 2002-03 season. Taylor’s ownership in hockey began in 1983 with the purchase of the Burnaby Bluehawks of the British Columbia Junior Hockey League and continued with the purchase of the Richmond Sockeyes in the BCJHL and the New Westminster Royals in the BCJHL.

Taylor Trophy Champions

2017     Colorado Eagles 2016     Allen Americans2015     Allen Americans2014     Alaska Aces2013     Stockton Thunder2012     Las Vegas Wranglers 2011     Alaska Aces 2010     Idaho Steelheads 2009     Alaska Aces 2008    Las Vegas Wranglers 2007     Idaho Steelheads 2006     Alaska Aces 2005     Trenton Titans 2004     Idaho Steelheads 2003     Columbia Inferno 2002     Greenville Grrrowl 2001     South Carolina Stingrays 2000     Louisiana IceGators 1999     Mississippi Sea Wolves 1998     Pensacola Ice Pilots