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For more information, contact: Joel Silverberg, Director of Broadcasting (865) 525-7825,

Dino Balsamo had two goals and three assists for Knoxville on Sunday. PHOTO: Michael King.

Hunter Bersani scored with what appeared to be his glove or a high stick at 6:25 of the 3rd period and the Knoxville Ice Bears fell to the Macon Mayhem 7-6 Sunday night at the Macon Centreplex.

Dino Balsamo had two goals and three assists for Knoxville, which has lost two straight.

Bersani gave Macon a 7-5 lead on the power play when a shot from the left circle popped into the air above Kristian Stead. Bersani motioned towards the puck above the crossbar with his stick and appeared to hit it with his glove. The puck bounced behind Stead and was ruled a good goal.

Brett Ouderkirk scored late in the third for Knoxville to cut the deficit to one, but Bailey Conger’s shot from the right circle hit the post with a minute remaining and the Ice Bears didn’t get another great chance.

Knoxville got started early when Jagger Williamson converted a power play just 1:16 into the game. Balsamo found Williamson right in front through the left circle. Williamson had time to pull the puck back and flip it over Trevor Martin’s glove.

Macon scored twice in ten seconds to take a 2-1 lead just moments later. Garrett Hallford tapped in a rebound past Jeremie Forget to tie the game and Nate Keely scored on a breakaway to put the Mayhem in front.

Balsamo tied the game for Knoxville with a wrist shot from the left circle. Ryan Devine sent the puck through the neutral zone and Conger tapped it along to Balsamo, who beat Martin up high for his 24th of the year.

CJ Hayes converted a breakaway at 10:50 to give Macon the lead again and Bersani converted a power play before the intermission to make it 4-2 at the end of the first. Forget was pulled after the third goal and finished with three saves. He was replaced by Stead.

Knoxville drew even when Conger scored on the power play early in the second period. Conger swept the puck across the crease and tried to slid it by Martin, but Martin got the left pad on the initial attempt before Conger lifted the puck over the outstretched net minder to make it 4-3. Balsamo netted his second of the night when the puck took in awkward bounce off the corner and came right in front of the crease to him.

Caleb Cameron and Tommy Munichiello scored four minutes apart to pull the Mayhem back ahead 6-4. 30 seconds later, Cole McKechney finished off a Colton Fletcher centering pass to cut the deficit to one at the end of the second period.

The two teams will face each other on Friday and Saturday back in Knoxville.

ABOUT The Knoxville Ice Bears: The Knoxville Ice Bears organization began in 2002 and was an inaugural charter member of the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL) in 2004. As four-time SPHL Champions and five-time regular season champions, the Ice Bears are an experienced and established organization, offering the city and its visitors a balanced product of highlight-reel hockey, unique and exciting intermission activity and endless fan interaction, presenting the most affordable, family-friendly way to enjoy sports and entertainment. Season, Partial Season and Flex Tickets are now on sale. For more information, visit or call (865) 525-7825.