WORCESTER -- Mark Calnan (Wilmington, MA) drilled home a free kick from just outside the top of the box in the 61st minute to propel WPI to a 2-1 victory over visiting Wheaton in an important NEWMAC men's soccer contest played late Saturday afternoon in Alumni Stadium.
With the victory, WPI, seventh in the most recent Untied Soccer Coaches New England top 10, ups its record to 8-2-2 overall and 2-0-2 in conference play. The Engineers have amassed eight points and are tied with Babson (2-0-2) for second in the eight-team NEWMAC, just a point behind front-running Springfield (3-1). Wheaton slips to 5-7 on the season and 2-2 in NEWMAC action.
With the game deadlocked at 1-1, WPI's Jackson Conroy (Reading, MA) was taken down two yards outside the box. Calnan stepped up on the restart and lofted a shot in the upper right corner for his fourth goal of the season and his third game-winner in as many outings.
The Crimson and Gray opened the scoring at 14:05 as Luke Reiniger (Rowley, MA) sent a long cross from the right side across the field to Frank Ciliberto (Spencerport, NY), who tucked his shot in the far corner for his fourth goal of 2018. Wheaton leveled the game at 1-1 after Curran Wait (Scituate, MA) successfully converted a penalty kick after a Wheaton player was taken town in the far corner of the box in the opening moments of the second half. The goal at 46:51 was the senior's second of the year.
Sophomore goalkeeper Rufus Adams (Duxbury, MA) made five stops, including a pair of free kicks down the stretch, while freshman Diego Medina (Yonkers, NY) halted a pair of shots for Wheaton.
The Engineers doubled up Wheaton 14-7 in shots and accounted for three of the game's five corner kicks.
WPI is off until Saturday when it heads to Coast Guard for an 11:30am NEWMAC match. Wheaton wraps up a brief two-game road trip Tuesday when it steps out of conference to face Wesleyan at 7pm.