Photo: Bryan Meeks
Despite a hard-fought game on Teacher Appreciation Night, the Mayhem fell victim to a massive momentum swing in the second period and fell by a 4-3 final.
Just 2:28 into the game, Fayetteville struck first with a goal from Brian Bowen. The Marksmen’s top scorer accelerated down the slot and tucked the puck inside the right post, beating Kevin Entmaa and giving the visitors an early 1-0 lead.
A penalty against Donald Olivieri for delay of game 6:16 into the contest proved costly, as the Mayhem clicked just 31 seconds into the ensuing man-advantage. Danny Cesarz received a crisp cross-ice pass by Josh Cousineau on a zone entry, and the veteran finished off the play with his third goal of the season. Just under ten minutes later, Danny Perez buried a heavy wrist shot from above the right circle on a 4-on-4. Perez’s goal gave the Mayhem their first lead of the night, which they held heading into the first intermission.
Momentum took a sharp turn in Fayetteville’s favor in the middle stages of period two. After a shorthanded opportunity in which Macon appeared to score, the referee gave the washout signal and allowed play to continue. Seconds later, Bowen sniped a shot over Entmaa’s shoulder to tie the game up for the Marksmen.
Fayetteville added a pair of quick goals to rebuild its lead. Captain Max Cook fired a one-timer from the bottom of the right circle to make the score 3-2, and defenseman Donald Olivieri blasted a slap shot from the right point which eluded Entmaa just 38 seconds later. Within 1:37, the visitors had scored three goals and suddenly created a 4-2 advantage.
Cesarz electrified the arena early in the third period, ripping a wrist shot past Blake Wojtala just 1:14 into the closing stanza. Cesarz’s second strike of the game instilled hope for a Macon comeback attempt, but the Marksmen held the Mayhem snipers at bay. The visitors ultimately held on for a 4-3 regulation win.
The Mayhem will host the Quad City Storm for the first time this season on The Grinch Night at the Macon Centreplex on Friday, December 13th. It will be the second Family 4-Pack Night of the season, as well. For tickets, click here.