Macon falls in a close Tuesday night contest against the Pensacola Ice Flyers by a final score of 6-4.
As the first puck dropped, the Mayhem were immediately pushed to their own end and kept there for a good stretch to open the first period. Macon was able to take control of the pace and ended up striking first when Rourke Russell, in his first game back from the ECHL, tapped in a beautiful pass from Rhett Kingston. The Ice Flyers were quick to answer with a goal to tie the game up. Pensacola tacked on two more late in the period sending The Mayhem into the first intermission down two.
The Mayhem wasted no time getting themselves back in the game in 2nd as Tommy Munichiello beat Pensacola goalie Christian Pavlas 17 seconds into the period. Less than three minutes later Munichiello struck again, this time on the powerplay, to even up the game at 3-3. The Mayhem continued to defend well but couldn’t sustain offensive pressure. Late in the period, a weak wrist shot from Ice Flyers defenseman Jay Powell found its way through traffic and past Josh Benson to give Pensacola the lead heading into the third.
The Ice Flyers hit the Mayhem quick in the 3rd as Nick Leitner extended his team’s lead less than a minute in. After re-establishing their two-goal lead, the Ice Flyers seemed content to slow down the game and suffocate the boys from Macon. That worked until the speed of CJ Hayes proved too much as he cut through the middle and had a seemingly open chance on Christian Pavlas until he was taken down on his way. A penalty shot ensued and CJ Hayes may be the last guy on the ice you want taking a penalty shot if you’re playing against him. He made it look easy and brought the Mayhem back to within one. The Mayhem would launch an empty net attack and look dangerous, but they would ultimately concede an empty netter and fall 6-4.
The Mayhem will hit the ice Friday, December 30th when they face off against the Fayetteville Marksmen on Healthcare Heroes night. Following that will be a fun-for-the-family New Year’s Eve showdown with the Knoxville Ice Bears. Tickets and more information are available at maconmayhem.com.