Wesleyan broke open a 1-0 game late in the second period and went on to pick up a 5-1 win over the Panthers (5-5-1, 3-3-1) on Friday night. Middlebury returns to action on Saturday with a 4:00 p.m. game at Trinity, while the Cardinals (5-3-1, 0-4-1) will host Williams at 3:00 p.m.
Middlebury’s Matt Danner had a great chance to open the scoring 12:02 into the first period, but his shot from the right faceoff circle was denied by Wesleyan’s goaltender Tim Sestak.
The Cardinals looked to capitalize on a power play with 18:57 expired, but Spencer Fox’s shot hit the pipe, and the teams headed into the intermission knotted at 0-0.
Wesleyan came out of the break strong, scoring just 1:36 into the second frame after an initial shot by Tyler Levine was denied by Middlebury netminder Adam Wisco. Tyler Wyatt collected the rebound, before Fox redirected Wyatt’s shot to make it 1-0.
The Cardinals extended their lead to 2-0 when Vincent Lima beat a Panther defender, before tucking the puck inside the far post with 15:25 expired.
Just 1:17 later, Wesleyan’s Luke Babcock blasted a shot from the high slot in transition, making it 3-0.
Middlebury cut the deficit to 3-1 just 1:23 into the third period when Kamil Tkaczuk wrapped around the goal, before sneaking the puck past Sestak for his fourth of the year.
The Cardinals responded just 36 seconds later, increasing their lead to 4-1. Jordan Rose collected his own rebound off an initial save, before Tyler Kobryn one-timed the puck into the back of the net.
The Panthers had a chance to score at the 9:11 mark, but Owen Powers’ shot was denied with a nice glove save by Sestak.
Wesleyan scored its fifth and final goal at the 17:11 mark when Walker Harris intercepted a pass, before finding the empty Middlebury net, making it 5-1.
Sestak picked up the win in goal for the Cardinals, making 34 saves. Wisco made 25 stops in 53:56 of play, while Brian Ketchabaw made four saves in 5:17.