MACON, GA- The Macon Mayhem returned home to take on the top-ranked Birmingham Bulls. Macon would have to battle through adversity as they only had 14 skaters healthy enough to play.
Both teams would be off to a sleepy start as neither team grabbed any quick momentum. Nick Magill-Diaz would open the scoring for the Bulls after his point shot took a strange deflection and fluttered by Jimmy Poreda. Macon would kill off a penalty and start to turn up the heat themselves. Macon would gain some domineering pressure in the Birmingham zone but could not break the seal in the first.
Macon would continue to threaten with some sustained pressure, but the tremendous Hayden Stewart would thwart those chances. While Macon was trying to grab a line change, they were caught off guard by the Bulls as Dillon Radin doubled the Bulls’ advantage to 2. Macon would kill off a penalty to hold the deficit at 2-0.
The Mayhem would display their grit in the third period. In a period where it would have been easy to phone it in with the number of skaters playing, Macon made a game out of it. Anthony Hora would strike on the powerplay to pull the Mayhem back to within one; the goal would be Hora’s first professional goal in North America. Billy Jerry and David Nippard would earn the assists on that one. Macon would continue to scratch and claw in the third on a late powerplay and an empty net man advantage. Despite some heart-stopping opportunities, Macon could not get one across the goal line, falling 2-1.
Despite losing the game tonight, the Mayhem squad showed their hearts and tenacity. Despite having just 14 skaters and, of those, two listed defensemen, many of whom who are battling injuries of their own, Macon went toe-to-toe with the best team in the league for a full 60 minutes. Jimmy Poreda was stout in the loss, stopping 28/30.
The gritty Macon Mayhem will be right back at it tomorrow night for a matchup with the Roanoke Railyard Dawgs on Georgia National Rodeo Night. Puck drop is at 7:00 p.m. For tickets or more information, visit maconmayhem.com or call us at 478-803-1592.