MACON, GA – The tone was set early in the Macon Coliseum as the jawing started from both sides prior to puck drop. Portillo drew an early penalty, and Macon was on the power play to start the game. Knoxville would kill it off however. A few minutes later and Portillo was assessed a minor for roughing, putting Macon back on the man advantage. This time Macon would convert after CJ Hayes found Michael McChesney in the left circle who would slot it home for his first goal in Mayhem colors. Macon’s penalty kill unit would then suffocate Knoxville’s power play to preserve the one goal advantage into the break.
Knoxville would come out fighting in the second period. With intense forechecking pressure, Knoxville would create several opportunities, but they were met with better goaltending by the former Ice Bear Jimmy Poreda, now sporting a Mayhem jersey. After several more opportunities, Knoxville’s Coy Prevost would break through to even the score. Macon would start to gain momentum as the period continued, and the intensity increased. Macon’s Poreda and Knoxville’s Stead would each take turns turning away shots to keep it even at 1 heading into the second intermission.
The third period started with everything to play for. Teams traded shots back and forth, but it would be Macon who would break through first. CJ Hayes would streak down the right side and across the goal crease before slotting it home on the backhand to give Macon a 2-1 lead. Then, the extracurriculars would begin. Macon’s Tim Faulkner would drop the gloves and take down Rex Moe, which was just the beginning of the may lay. Knoxville’s Alex Basey and Macon’s Jake Goldowski would square up next. This fight poured over and got both Sacha Roy and Justin Portillo going after they had been jawing all night. After the dust settled with the scrums, Macon was left with a few anxious moments to protect the Mayhem lead. Jimmy Poreda would stand tall, stopping 34 of 35 shots, to preserve a 2-1 Mayhem win.
Macon swept the Knoxville Ice Bears on opening weekend which is the first time that has happened to Knoxville since 2008. Macon takes all four points to start the year.
Macon will welcome the Fayetteville Marksmen next weekend for a two-game series at the Macon Coliseum. It’s Teacher Appreciation Weekend, and teachers are encouraged to take advantage of a special ticket discount just for them. Saturday is also Peanuts Night at the Coliseum as the Mayhem celebrate Halloween in search of the Great Pumpkin. For tickets or more information, visit maconmayhem.com or call us at 478-803-1592.