The Mayhem hung tight with the Pensacola Ice Flyers for two and half periods of play, but would eventually fall 6-3 on Wednesday night. The Ice Flyers remained undefeated at The Hangar and left the Mayhem searching for answers defensively.
Pensacola came out strong to start the first period with Tommasso Bucci firing a rebound past Cody Porter. The Mayhem took a pair of early penalties and tested Pensacola’s league-low Power Play unit. After killing off the pair of penalties, the Mayhem would allow Garrett Milan a breakaway from the blue line which he would capitalize on. The Mayhem would pull a goal back with 5:43 left in the first with heavy traffic around the net. Stathis Soumelidis would take advantage and snap the puck by goaltender Jake Kupsky after a nice pass from Danny Cesarz.
After killing off an early penalty in the second period, the Mayhem sounded the horn almost immediately amongst the confusion as heavy traffic surrounded Kupsky. Daniel Perez seized the opportunity with an assist from Jarret Kup. The tie would not last long though as the Ice Flyers’ Bucci redirected a shot from Tanner Froese past Porter for his second of the game. The Macon Mayhem would buckle down down the stretch in the second period in search of a tying goal. Following a shot off the goalie’s pads by Caleb Cameron, Marcus Ortiz would snap off a wrister from the rebound to give him his 7th goal on the year. After a chippy last minute of play, Macon’s Ryan Devine would be assessed a game misconduct to send him to the locker room early.
The early part of the third period would be defined by strong play between the pipes on both ends. Big stops from both Macon’s Porter and Pensacola’s Kupsky would keep the score knotted at three. Porter would finally break at the 9:09 mark in the third as Eddie Matsushima netted the eventual game winner off a Patrick Megannety assist. The Ice Flyers didn’t stop there as Matt Ustaski would score his first career SPHL goal off a rebounded shot from Blake Young. In an effort to get a goal back, the Mayhem would go with an empty net in what would eventually gift Matsushima his second goal of the game.
At the final sound of the horn, Macon’s Cody Porter would drop to 0-2 on the season after a busy evening in which he saved 36 of 41 shots. Pensacola’s Kupsky would save 26 of the 29 shots that he faced en route to his first win in his professional debut. The Mayhem will return home this Saturday night looking for revenge against the Pensacola Ice Flyers. Puck drops at 7:05 p.m. on WWE Night.