FAYETTEVILLE, NC – With a blood moon in the sky, the Macon Mayhem headed to the Crown Coliseum looking to draw a little proverbial blood of their own. Following a 3-1 loss at the hands of the Marksmen last Sunday, the Mayhem had to be eager to right that wrong heading into Friday night.
After a delayed start to the game, the Marksmen would act as if the game had long been started. Fornaris grabbed an early lead for the home squad within the first minute. After a few brilliant saves from Mayhem netminder Dillon Kelley, he would succumb two more goals to Wyatt Noskey and Donald Olivieri to give the Marksmen a three nothing advantage. However, the Mayhem would keep pushing back with several opportunities. Eventually a very patient Chase DiBari would hold the puck along the left side until snapping off a nasty wrister for his first professional goal. Mayhem would head to the break trailing by two.
The second period would remain true to what has mainly been plaguing the Mayhem to start the season, a lack of offensive opportunities. Despite a round on the powerplay and four and four, the Mayhem would only find three shots in the period and would spend the majority of time out of possession. Despite quite a few stellar saves from Kelley, the puck luck would favor the Marksmen as McCloy would get credit for a goal that pinballed all around before settling in the back of the net. Desjardins’ squad would head to the break in dire need of some offense.
The captain would heed the call early in the third. Drapluk shielded the puck and deposited the puck just as Bryce Ferrell would leave the penalty box for the Marksmen. Fresh off a goal and perhaps their strongest powerplay effort of the season, the Mayhem had new life in the game. With several powerplay opportunities throughout the third, the Mayhem kept knocking at the door yet to no avail. With a late powerplay opportunity, Coach Desjardins pushed all his chips in by pulling Kelley for the six on four opportunity. Unfortunately when the river flopped, the Mayhem were left wondering what could have been as Bryan Moore scored the empty netter.
Despite taking the loss and allowing four goals, Kelley continued to be a bright spot for the Macon squad, stopping 28 of 32 shots on goal with a few unbelievable efforts. The story of the game for the Mayhem continues to be a lack of offense and starting slow. It felt as if the Mayhem were left chasing the puck for the majority of the game with very little established possessions, and the Mayhem will also be looking to address starting fast as the past few games they’ve got beaten early before settling into the flow of the game. Based on the eye test though, the Mayhem were much more competitive in battling for pucks and creating opportunities on the forecheck. Zac Desjardins and the Mayhem will get another chance at the Marksmen tomorrow night right back in the Crown Coliseum.