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FORMER EAGLE COACH EVANS DIES

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Former Salt Lake Golden Eagles coach Jack "Tex" Evans, who guided the club to the only three Central Hockey League Adams Cup titles it ever won in his six seasons at the helm, died Sunday morning of cancer in Hartford, Conn., at age 68.

Evans' wife Margaret and their children all live in the Hartford area. A private family service is planned for Wednesday, and Evans is to be cremated Thursday, said former Eagle general manager Chuck Schell. A public memorial service is scheduled for next week in Manchester, Conn., near Hartford.Evans left Salt Lake City after the 1982-83 season to coach the Hartford Whalers of the National Hockey League and is still the only coach to have ever gotten the Whalers a division title. He took over a Whaler team that set a club record for losing in '81-82 and made it the winningest team in franchise history by 1986-87. In playoffs, his Whalers made division finals or semis three times.

He was coach of the Golden Eagles in the legendary 1974-75 season, when the NHL, which took the Eagles from Charles O. Finley, decided to shut the team down. At the 11th hour, Salt Lakers Art Teece and the late O. Thayne Acord purchased the team, and on Aug. 23, Evans was named coach. He took the Eagles to their first Adams Cup title on May 3, 1975, in a win over Dallas that many Salt Lakers consider the most exciting game ever played on Salt Palace ice.