Jumping out to a 2-0 lead in the first half on goals by Austin Woolridge '11 and Jacob Levkowicz '12, Wesleyan carried a 3-1 lead into halftime as Rory O'Neill '13 (#27, photo by Peter Stein '84) put home the rebound of a Zach Dixon '12 shot with only 18 seconds left in the period.
When Western Conn. scored 10 minutes into the second half, Wesleyan played well enough to keep the Colonials off the board for the final 35 minutes, preserving the team's unbeaten status at 7-0-3 with the 3-2 triumph. The only Division III team in New England without a loss and one of just four in the country to start the week, Wesleyan had moved up to #1 in New England and #6 in the country in the latest NSCAA polls.
Though Wesleyan keeper Adam Purdy '13 was touched for two goals in a game for the first time in his career, he came up with seven saves, three of them over the final 45 minutes.
For O'Neill and Levkowicz, it was their first career goal while Woolridge scored for the second time this season and fourth over his three years.
Since Wesleyan and Western Conn. renewed their rivalry after a four-year hiatus between 1999 and 2003, Wesleyan is 5-0-1 vs. the Colonials from 2004 through 2009 and 10-5-3 overall since the first meeting in 1988.
Wesleyan has a key NESCAC weekend coming up as the Cardinals host Bates Sat., Oct. 17 before heading to Middlebury for a battle with the Panthers Sun., Oct. 18.