Even with some of their top scorers rotating on and off the roster due to call ups to the ECHL, the Macon Mayhem continue to have the top scoring offense in the SPHL
Now, they appear to have strong defensive play to back it up.
The Mayhem rolled into the weekend with wins in a pair of low-scoring games — 3-1 on Thursday against Roanoke and 3-2 in overtime Friday against Evansville. Macon played at Huntsville on Saturday night. Friday's win was the team's fourth in a row and sixth in its past ten.
Overall, Macon has not allowed more than three goals in its past eight games, and the Mayhem have gotten the job done on the defensive end with different faces in between the pipes.
"We've made some changes and worked on quite a bit of things in practice and just preached to the guys to just tighten up in our zone," Mayhem forward John Siemer said. "Guys have just gone out and made plays."
Greg Dodds appeared to emerge from the fray as the team's top goalie on the depth chart after signing with the team Dec. 12, starting all but one game. He put together a 4-1 record and .932 save percentage, good for second-best in the SPHL going into Friday. Dodds, however, was loaned to the Indy Fuel of the SPHL on Tuesday, putting the spotlight on the team's other two goalies - Troy Passingham and Charlie Finn.
Both met the challenge. Passingham stopped 25 of 26 shots in Thursday's win with Finn withstanding making a career-high 52 saves in his first start since Dec. 8 and first win since Nov. 25.
Stathis Soumelidis tallied a pair of goals in Friday's win, including the game-winning score in overtime. Stephen Pierog, who this week returned from a loan to the ECHL, registerted a pair of assists on Friday as Macon still fills the gaps left by forward Daniel Gentzler. Dodds, and defensemen Vinny Muto and Chris Joseph being with ECHL teams.
"I've told all our guys. We've had guys out of the lineup and it’s an opportunity for them to play in situations that they may not be used to playing in," Mayhem head coach Kevin Kerr said. "That's part of being a professional hockey player, being ready to play in those situations and understanding our systems."
It's an opportunity that the Mayhem locker room welcomes.
"It's always a time for other guys to fill in roles that they usually don't. A lot of guys feed off of that," Siemer said.