Midwestern State broke through for a pair of rapid fire second-half goals to come away with a much-needed 4-1 win over Colorado State-Pueblo Friday night at Rawlings Complex.
"I was proud of the guys," MSU coach Doug Elder said."These were two teams fighting for their first win. We were in total control and could have been up bigger. The guys responded well after they tied it."
Junior Chase Robertson staked the Mustangs to a 1-0 lead drilling in a shot from 25 yards out on a restart in the 22nd minute, but the Thunderwolves rallied for the equalizer on a free kick of their off of the boot of Dustin Geist in the 69th minute.
"We had quite a few chances especially in the first half," Elder said. "We've had some problems defending restarts and he bent it over the wall. These guys just come at you and leave a gap in the midfield. We were able to pick our chances well to take it back at them."
The score was tied for just three minutes as MSU junior forward Dan Johns put the Mustangs back on top with a thunderous drive from 45 yards out in the 72nd minute.
"The keeper was off of his line and (Johns) turned and drove it passed him on a line," Elder said. "It was a really impressive shot."
Less than a minute later, junior midfielder Andrew Power converted a cross from Len Smith to give MSU a commanding 3-1 lead.
"It was a good cross from Lenny and Power was able to flick it on goal," Elder said. "Going up two goals really put the fork in them."
Midwestern tacked on a fourth goal in the 86th minute when sophomore Idi Camara headed in a cross from junior defender Sam Bartek.
The Mustangs held 29-9 edge in shots while placing 16 on goal to break out of an early season scoring slump.
"We had a really good training session last night and finished really well," Elder said. "I felt like we were going to score some goals. We saw some really promising things."
The Mustangs close the road trip Sunday at Colorado-Colorado Springs. Kickoff is set for noon.
Colorado State-Pueblo fell to 0-3.
Three players set career kills highs allowing Midwestern State to outlast Texas-Permian in five sets -- 25-21, 18-25, 25-20, 23-25, 16-14 -- Friday night in the Heartland/Lone Star Conference Crossover at Rip Griffin Center.
The Mustangs (5-1) close tournament play with matches against Texas A&M International and Lubbock Christian Saturday at 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., respectively.
Senior middle blocker Caitlin Wallace slammed down a career-best 18 kills committing just a pair of errors for a .500 attack percentage, while sophomore outside hitter Marissa Olivares worked for 15 kills with just four miscues for a .333 kill rate.
True freshman Sarah Garfield found the floor with her first seven attacks on her way to a 14-kill, 5-dig and 3-block effort.
The teams traded set victories before MSU utilized the net play of 5-8 junior middle blocker Kaitlyn Molloy, who had a hand in four of the Mustangs' five blocks in the decisive frame.
Senior outside hitter Beatriz Villalba also erupted for four of her nine kills in the fifth set as the Mustangs staved off four match points while riding the service game of Madelyn Johnson to take the final six points of the match.
Freshman setter Sarah Rosinke recorded a season-best 38 assists to go along with 11 digs, while senior setter/outside hitter Marija Jovanovic finished with eight kills, 20 assists and 21 digs.
Junior libero Casey Fletcher led back row efforts with 24 digs, while Molloy rolled up all-around numbers with seven kills, 19 digs and seven total blocks.
Melissa Lusk had 15 kills to lead Texas-Permian Basin as the Falcons dipped to 1-5.
St. Mary's Jenna Paul and Lauren Holman combined for 25 kills to lead the Rattlers to a 25-18, 25-21, 25-23 win over Midwestern State Friday afternoon in the opener of the Heartland/Lone Star Conference Crossover at the Eagle Activity Center.
The loss snapped a season opening four-game winning for the Mustangs, who fell to 4-1 on the season while STMU improved to 2-4.
The Rattlers blitzed MSU to a the tune of a .432 team attack percentage in the opening set putting down 20 kills paced by an efficient Paul, who accounted for six kills with no errors, while Holman and Kelsey Huber had five kills each.
Midwestern solved the Rattler attack by limiting it to a .152 clip over the remaining two sets, but never got it own offense untracked hitting .164 as a team while topping out at .194 in the opening frame.
Senior middle blocker Caitlin Wallace led the Mustangs with eight kills with three errors in 22 attempts (.227) while sophomore outside hitter Marissa Olivares proved most efficient finishing with five kills and a single error in 15 attacks (.267).
Senior setter Marija Jovanovic completed a solid all-around performance with seven kills, 13 set assists and 11 digs while junior middle blocker Kaitlyn Molloy notched five kills, 11 digs and two total blocks.
Junior Casey Fletcher and redshirt freshman Madelyn Johnson also had 11 digs each for MSU.
The Mustangs close tournament play Saturday against Texas A&M International at 9 a.m. and Lubbock Christian at 5 p.m.
The Wildcats opened their season on a high note on Friday, beating the Odessa Jackalopes 4-0 at Kay Yeager Coliseum.
Kyle Bauman stole the show for Wichita Falls, potting his first two goals of the season in a span of 2:30 in the second period. Chase Munroe started in net and made 18 saves on the way to earning his first shutout with the Wildcats.
Wichita Falls carried the play in the first period, outshooting the Jackalopes 16-5 in the frame, but was not able to find a breakthrough until mid-way through the second.
With roughly 11 minutes gone, a turnover at Odessa's blue line resulted in a partial two-on-one break for the Wildcats. Bauman picked up the loose puck and dished to Josh Haverstrom to his left before driving hard to the net. Haverstrom's return pass was right on the tape of Bauman, who roofed it into the top corner to give Wichita Falls the 1-0 advantage.
Bauman picked up his second just a few minutes later. With the Wildcats on the power play, Sam Piazza worked the puck to Colin Staub down low. Staub's shot-come-pass slithered its way across the crease to the left post, were a wide-open Bauman slammed it home to make it 2-0.
Wichita Falls put the game out of reach in the third period, again scoring two goals in quick succession. Will Vosejpka picked up his first of the season on the power play, putting home his own rebound from just below the right face-off circle. Barely two minutes later, rookie Max Reisinger scored his first goal as a Wildcat after a centering feed from Tyler Ledford bounced off his chest and into the net to give Wichita Falls a 4-0 lead.
The Wildcats and Jackalopes will meet again on Saturday night, with puck-drop scheduled for 7:05 p.m. at Kay Yeager Coliseum.
Denton Guyer 3
Wichita Falls 0
25-19, 25-15, 25-19
25-22, 25-12, 23-25, 14-25, 15-11