MAYHEM WEEKLY: MAYHEM PICK UP 3 OF 4 POINTS IN FIRST ACTION IN 3 WEEKS
MACON, Ga. – The Macon Mayhem of the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL) played their first games in nearly three weeks after five games were postponed due to SPHL health and safety protocols. The team ended up on both sides of 2-1 games in their pair of contests, defeating Knoxville 2-1 on the road Thursday and then dropping a 2-1 decision at Pensacola after an eight-round shootout on Saturday night. The Mayhem will play their first home games in nearly five weeks this coming weekend with home games against Knoxville on Friday night and Birmingham on Saturday night.
CURRENT RECORDS AND STATS
Record: 3-1-2, 8 pts (4th, SPHL)
13 GF, 13 GA – 0 SHGF, 0 SHGA
8.3% PP (1/12 – 5th, SPHL); 94.4% PK (17/18 – 2nd, SPHL)
81 PIM (5th, SPHL); 13.50 PIM/G (2nd, SPHL)
1/19 – F Dominick Sacco activated from injured reserve
1/21 – F Dean Balsamo, F Ryan Smith, D Nick Minerva loaned to Tulsa (ECHL)
1/21 – F Brian Bowen placed on 30-day injured reserve
1/25 – D Paul Meyer loaned to South Carolina (ECHL)
1/27 – F Dean Balsamo, F Ryan Smith returned from Tulsa (ECHL)
1/27 – F Mason Baptista signed
2/1 – F Dominick Sacco waived
UPCOMING GAMES AND PROMOTIONS
Friday, February 5 – Knoxville at Macon, 7:30 PM EST (Season Series vs. KNX: 2-1-0)
PROMOTIONS: It’s ‘90s Night! Look for special ‘90s themed promotions and music during the game.
The Mayhem hit home ice for the first time in nearly five weeks on Friday night as they take on the Knoxville Ice Bears. Macon fell 3-0 to Knoxville in the Mayhem’s last home game back on January 3. Since then, the Mayhem have won twice against the Ice Bears on the road in Tennessee: a 6-3 win on January 8 prior to the next five games being postponed due to health and safety protocols, followed by a 2-1 win last Thursday night in Macon’s first game since the postponements. The Mayhem currently sit two points ahead of Knoxville in the standings despite having played three fewer games than the Ice Bears.
Saturday, February 6 – Birmingham at Macon, 6:30 PM EST (Season Series vs. BHM: 0-0-1)
PROMOTIONS: It’s Margaritaville Night! The team will be wearing specialty jerseys that will be auctioned off following the game along with other margarita-themed promotions.
The Mayhem will have a chance to atone for their other home game on Saturday night as the Birmingham Bulls visit the Centreplex. The Bulls spoiled the Mayhem’s home opener back on January 2, taking a 3-2 overtime victory. Birmingham is currently in third place in the SPHL, three points ahead of Macon; however, the Mayhem have four games in hand on the Bulls.
MAYHEM WEEK IN REVIEW
Thursday, January 28 – Macon 2 at Knoxville 1 (Attendance: 1,081)
The Mayhem picked up right where they left off 20 days prior with a hard-fought victory in Knoxville on Thursday night. Unlike the game on January 8, however, offense was at a premium as Macon eked out a 2-1 victory over the Ice Bears. Knoxville scored the opening marker in the final minute of the first period before Macon responded with two goals within 2:32 of each other in the latter stages of the middle frame. Dean Balsamo opened the scoring with a lacrosse-style goal he whipped into the net behind Knoxville goaltender Peter di Salvo, while he assisted on Gabe Guertler’s game-winning goal later in the period for the victory. Macon’s two goals came during a second period where they outshot Knoxville by a whopping 15-1 margin. Di Salvo made 28 saves on 30 shots despite taking the loss in net for the Ice Bears, while Jake Theut turned aside all but one of the 19 Knoxville shots on goal he faced for the win between the pipes for the Mayhem. Knoxville was 0 for 4 on the power play while Macon failed to score in their lone chance.
Saturday, January 30 – Macon 1 at Pensacola 2 (SO) (Attendance: 2,754)
Macon’s Jake Theut and Pensacola’s Chase Perry were the stars of the show in Saturday night’s game in Pensacola. Both made clutch save after save to keep their respective teams in the game. In the end, it came down to a shootout, one that saw Pensacola’s Darren McCormick score all four goals for the Ice Flyers to take the extra standing point and the 2-1 victory. Theut and Perry kept the scoreboard showing goose eggs on both sides until the 11:22 mark of the 3rd period with a Pensacola goal, then Stephen Pierog broke through with the game-tying marker with just 3:19 left in regulation. Theut made 39 of 40 saves in regulation and overtime, while Perry stopped 38 of 39 Macon shots on goal he faced. Both teams finished the game 0 for 3 on the power play.
THREE STARS OF THE WEEK
1.G Jake Theut – Theut was in net for both games last week, allowing just one regulation goal in each contest. He stopped 18 of 19 shots in Thursday’s win at Knoxville and 39 of 40 in regulation and overtime on Saturday at Pensacola. The SPHL recognized Theut as the league’s Player of the Week for his performance in both games.
2.F Dean Balsamo – Balsamo had a hand in both goals in Thursday’s win at Knoxville. He scored the game-tying goal late in the second period then assisted on Gabe Guertler’s game winner less than three minutes later. Balsamo leads all Mayhem players with six points in six games so far this season.
3.F Gabe Guertler – Guertler scored the game-winning goal on Thursday night in Knoxville. He has cracked the scoresheet in four out of the six games Macon has played on the season to date.