Miranda Byrd slammed down a match-high 16 kills to lead Midwestern State to its first Lone Star Conference road win of the season as the Mustangs took down Eastern New Mexico 25-27, 25-11, 25-21, 25-19 Tuesday night at Greyhound Arena.
The Mustangs snapped a three-game skid to improve to 13-9 on the season and to 5-8 in league play, while ENMU dipped to 5-18 and 1-13.
Byrd set a career high posting a .517 attack percentage while committing just a single error in 29 attacks.
Fittingly, the senior middle blocker's miscue was part of the Mustangs' sluggish start which allowed the Zias to sneak out a 27-25 win in the opening set.
The Mustangs did manage to put down 15 kills in the first set but committed seven errors to hit a respectable .222.
MSU would hit .323 in the remaining three sets as senior outside hitter Hillary White and sophomore middle blocker Caitlin Wallace joined Byrd in double-figures with 11 each.
Byrd also led the Mustangs at the net with seven total blocks as the Mustangs tallied a team total of 11. Freshman Katie Bertling added four while White and Wallace had three each.
Senior libero Kiara Jordan paced back row efforts with 25 digs while White completed her team-high eighth double-double of the season with 15 digs.
Eastern New Mexico's Jessica King paced the Zias with 14 kills while Amber Durand and Evelyn Escobar notched 12 and 11, respectably.
Midwestern State presents Dig Pink for breast cancer awareness Thursday night against Incarnate Word at D.L. Ligon Coliseum. First serve is set for 7 p.m.
The 14th ranked Midwestern State Mustangs battled cool and windy conditions to finish third at the Dallas Baptist University Classic Tuesday at the Golf Club of Dallas.
The Mustangs put up a team score of 320 in the final round to finish at 620, four strokes behind host and 28th ranked Dallas Baptist and three strokes behind sixth ranked St. Edward's in second at 617. Lubbock Christian, No. 15 in the NAIA, was fourth at 624 and No. 5 Grand Valley State (Mich.) fifth at 625.
Freshman Brenna Moore struggled in the second round on the 5865-yard GCD course being played at par 72 for the tournament. After posting a two-under-par 70 in round one, Moore posted a six-over 78 to finish third individually with a four-over 148.
But the conditions played havoc with all the players in the final round, as Flower Castillo of Incarnate Word posted the best round of the day with a one-over 73 to vault to second a stroke better than Moore. Only one other player had as low as a two-over during the day.
Grand Valley State's Sarah Hoffman won the individual title with a two-over 146 after a 77 to with her three-under 69 on Monday.
As a team, the Mustangs got a 78 from Taylor Klutts to match Moore for the daily low round. Klutts finished 22nd with a 12-over 156.
Kendra Whittley added an 80 in the final round to finish with a 155, while Lindsay Burkhart posted an 84 for a 162. Lauren Romines completed the team with an 85 on Tuesday to finish with a 160.
A bright spot for the Mustangs was the play of freshman Brittany Smith of Petrolia, who shot an 83 as an individual for a 158.
The Mustangs concluded their fall season with the tournament.
"This has been a great fall for our team," said MSU Coach Jeff Ray. "We've established ourselves as one of the top four in the region and I'm looking forward to next semester."
The Midwestern State Mustangs posted the best team score in the final round, but the second round did them in as MSU tied for fourth at the Missouri Golf Association's Regional Preview at the Jefferson City Country Club.
The Mustangs put up a 300 for the final round, but the aggregated 308 from the second round that was completed on Tuesday morning took away MSU's chance for a team victory.
MSU totaled 902 and tied Central Missouri in fourth. Central Oklahoma and St. Edward's tied for team title at 892, with Washburn (Kan.) in third at 897. Northeastern State was sixth at 903.
"I was pleased with the tournament overall, but second round really hurt us," said MSU Coach Jeff Ray. "The conditions (cool, windy and wet) weren't great, but we've got to work it out."
"This team is very talented and played against a great field, but I guess it's just the coach in me – we can do better," Ray added.
Freshman Derek Oland led MSU in the final round with a two-under-par 70 on the par 72, 7112 yard JCCC that is the site for the Midwest-South Central Super Regional this coming May. Oland paired that with the team best 76 from the suspended second round for a 226 and an 18th place finish.
"Derek is coming off an injury and played a solid tournament," Ray beamed. "I'm very pleased."
Jeremy LeGuen added a five-over 77 to his 79 in round two to finish at 20th with a 227. Sam Smith carded a four-over 76 to go with his second round 79 to stand 24th at 228. Raine Copeland posted twin 77s to finish at 229, while Trevor Ariana matched Oland's 76 in the second round and finished with an 80 for a 231.
Ray looked forward for the team, "We are one round away each tournament from being a really good team, and we're still young."
The Mustangs close out the fall on Oct. 31 and Nov. 1 at the Texas A&M-Commerce Classic at the Tribute Golf Club in The Colony.
Midwestern State jumped ahead nine spots to No. 13 in the latest National Soccer Coaches' Association of America released Tuesday afternoon.
The Mustangs extended their home field unbeaten streak to 38 matches with favorable results over Northeastern State and Newman (Kan.) last weekend to improve to 9-3 on the season.
MSU has carried a national ranking for each of the last 62 reporting periods in which it was eligible to receive mention dating back to the 2006 season.
The Mustangs are one of eight teams from the rugged South Central/Central regions receiving mention in the poll joining No. 3 Fort Lewis (Colo.), No. 4 Incarnate Word, No. 18 Texas A&M International, No. 19 Metro State (Colo.) and No. 23 Colorado Mines while Fort Hays State (Kan.) and Regis (Colo.) are receiving mention.
Midwestern continues its homestand with a Homecoming showdown against No. 4 Incarnate Word Friday night at the MSU Soccer Field. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.
The Mustangs close the weekend by playing host to St. Edward's on Sunday.