Macon was on the verge of a loss on the road to open its SPHL semifinal series.
But the Mayhem scored two goals in the final six minutes to slip past Pensacola 3-2 Wednesday night to take the first game of the best-of-three series.
Macon finally gets to play at home in the postseason on Friday, for the second time in two seasons, when the Mayhem host Pensacola at 7:35 p.m. at the Macon Coliseum. If necessary, Macon will host the third game on Saturday.
The Mayhem came up big down the stretch on the same day that Macon’s Kevin Kerr was named the Coach of the Year in the SPHL.
After a scoreless second period, Pensacola got on the board and took the lead.
The first came off the stick of Patrick Megannety, while rookie Ken Neil picked up the second goal. Aaron Clarke picked up assists on both goals.
With just more than five minutes left, Stephen Pierog scored his second goal of the playoffs to tie the game up.
The drama continued.
With just less than two minutes remaining, Jake Trask scored his third goal of the playoffs to give the Mayhem the 3-2 lead.
Goalie Jordan Ruby made the lead stand up. He stopped 32 of 34 shots for his third straight postseason win. Matt Zenzola gave up three goals on 33 shots for Pensacola.
The Mayhem started out the scoring at the 10:19 mark of the first period.
Ryan Michel’s slap shot past Pensacola goaltender Matt Zenzola in his first goal of the postseason gave Macon the lead. Daniel Gentzler and Trask assisted on the goal.
There was no scoring in the second period, setting up the action-packed third period.