Photo: Bryan Meeks
The Mayhem heavily outplayed their opponents to start Saturday night’s contest, but ultimately fell by a 5-2 final at the hands of the Peoria Rivermen.
Despite losing Friday night’s game by a 5-3 score, the Mayhem ended that contest on a high note by outplaying Peoria with a well-disciplined third period and outscoring them 2-0 in the final 20 minutes. They took the positives from that stanza and applied them to the start of Saturday night’s game, outshooting the Rivermen 20-4 in period one.
Macon’s dominant first period on Saturday night did not affect the scoreboard. Jeremy Brodeur stopped all 20 shots the Mayhem sent his way, which included a high number of point-blank saves. The goaltender also helped the Rivermen fight off two early penalties and managed to astoundingly keep the game scoreless heading into the first intermission.
The scoreless first period was followed by a four-goal second period in which both teams lit the lamp twice. The first strike came from Peoria winger Jakob Reichert 6:24 into the stanza. He ripped a shot past Cody Porter from the right wing on a 2-on-1 rush, extending his point-scoring streak to seven games. However, Daniel Perez responded with a one-timer from the right circle on a Macon power play to level the score 1-1. The goal marked the first time the Mayhem had solved Brodeur in two matchups.
Paul Fregeau silenced the crowd late in the middle frame, ripping a screen shot at the net from the right point. Porter couldn’t track the puck through the traffic, and it sailed over his glove to regain the visitors’ lead. Just 70 seconds later, the Mayhem had an answer. Josh Cousineau slipped around a defender in the opposing slot and snapped a shot towards the net. The puck ricocheted off a Peoria skate and bounced to Danny Cesarz, who shifted to his backhand quickly and lifted it inside of the crossbar to tie the game back up.
Period three was controlled by the visitors, who tallied three unanswered goals to skate away with the victory. Former Mayhem sniper Darren McCormick exploded through the neutral zone with a burst of speed, and backhanded a shot through Porter’s five-hole to give the Rivermen a go-ahead goal. He drew a penalty shortly afterward, resulting in a power play goal scored by Nick Neville. Jordan Ernst put the final nail in the coffin with a highlight-reel goal late in the period, putting the game out of reach.
The Mayhem will host the Knoxville Ice Bears next Friday, November 15th at the Macon Centreplex at 7:30 pm ET. It will be the team’s first Family 4-Pack night of the season. For more information, contact the Mayhem front office at (478) 803-1592.