MACON, Ga. – The Pensacola Ice Flyers have another name that can be referred to by – Four-Time President’s Cup Champions.
After knocking off Knoxville in the semifinal round, the Ice Flyers stunned the Macon Mayhem on Saturday night in Macon, going on the road to win 4-1 on the heels of a three-goal second period to sweep the championship series and win the SPHL championship.
It marked a sour end to the season for the Mayhem, winners of the William B. Coffey Trophy with a 68-point season. Macon, who had no losses to Pensacola in the regular season, was unable to replicate that level of success in the best-of-three series. In both finals wins against the Mayhem, the Ice Flyers never trailed.
Like Friday’s first game in Pensacola, both goalies kept things scoreless early on. That came to a halt in what ended up being a nightmarish second period for Macon, as the Ice Flyers on loan from Peoria took center stage and Pensacola outshot Macon 11-4. At 6:56 of the second period, Jordan Ernst shot the puck past Macon goalie Jake Theut for a 1-0 lead with Zach Walker and Brennan Blaszczak assisting.
Pensacola didn’t need much time to build on its lead. Less than two minutes later, Eddie Matsushima, getting assists from Jake Wahlin and Frederic Letourneau, extended the edge to 2-0.
A bit of what felt like rain to the Mayhem turned into a downpour with just over five minutes left in the third with another Peoria star, veteran Alec Hagaman making it 3-0 on an unassisted goal. Hagaman, who posted five points in the playoffs, was named the postseason MVP, much to the delight of the diehard Ice Flyers fans that made the drive to Macon.
That made Jake Kupsky’s job easy from there on out. Macon did muster a goal by Brian Bowen in the third, but the cushion was plenty for Macon, which came up empty on all four power plays against Pensacola.
For Kupsky, it elevated him into the elite distinction of having an unbeaten postseason mark. He stopped 29 out of 30 shots on Saturday. As for Theut, the Ice Flyers finally found a way to solve him after a regular season in which he shut Pensacola out three times. It ended an otherwise sterling season for the Macon goalie, who had a 1.74 GAA.
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