MACON, Ga – The Macon Mayhem are one win away from advancing to the President’s Cup Finals, and they’ll now head back to their home ice as they look to seal the deal.
After falling behind 1-0 on Thursday night at Huntsville in the first game of the semifinal round, Macon stormed back to score four unanswered tallies to lead the best-of-three series 1-0. The Mayhem will go for the series sweep on Saturday at 6:30 p.m. ET.
Macon took control in the first period. Down 1-0 after Huntsville opened up the scoring 10:30 into the game on a goal by Justin MacDonald, the Mayhem came to life. Curiously enough, it happened after a 13-minute delay to fix a damaged piece of plexiglass along the dashboards.
Regardless of how it happened, the result was the same – a pair of Mayhem goals by Gabe Guertler and Brian Bowen 1:15 apart that put Macon out front where it would end up staying.
Huntsville had its chances, working to convert opportunities in front of the net into goals. Each time, however, Mayhem goalie Jake Theut was up to the task, stopped 30 out of 31 shots. If there’s an area in which Macon thrived and where Huntsville fell short it was on the special teams.
In the second period, Huntsville had power-play chances roughly one minute apart as rough and interference penalties to Stathis Soumelidis and Dean Balsamo sent each off for two minutes. Macon’s penalty kill unit stood strong, turned both away, two of five power-plays by the Havoc that the Mayhem emerged unscathed.
Macon, on the other hand, used its power-play unit to help pad its lead. With Tommy Besinger serving a two-minute minor for interference, Jason Tackett made Huntsville pay, make it 3-1 on assists from Mason Baptista and Soumelidis. Baptista would add an empty-net goal for the final margin.