Metro State's Abby Rolph goal in the 97th minute during the first overtime spelled an end to a great run for Midwestern State Friday night in the opening round of the NCAA Division II playoffs at Colorado Mines Soccer Stadium.
The loss ended a seven match unbeaten string as the Mustangs recovered from a 1-2 start to post a 13-5-3 record claiming a Lone Star Conference title and earning the postseason tournament championship on the way to advancing to the national playoffs for the third time in the last four seasons.
"This group of seniors -- I'm so impressed and so happy that I got to coach them. It's the hardest part saying good bye to them," MSU coach Jeff Trimble said. "They really made an impact this year."
Kallie Essary highlighted the group of five by turning in one of the best single seasons in goal setting the program's single season shutout mark with nine clean sheets in her wake, but every senior made their mark.
Anna Molen's leadership as a three-year starter on the back line shaped a solid back line as she helped bring a pair of freshman starters along in Haley Britton and Katie Huff alongside sophomore Alex Edwards.
Four-year letter winner Mickey Brown brought pace as an attack mid while Tatyanny Griffiths showed out in clutch performances against Texas A&M-Commerce then finished out both PK rounds at the LSC Tournament last weekend in San Angelo.
And few delivered the solid play up front of Emily Saville, who finished as the team's assist leader this season.
The group just never seemed to have an off night and didn't end the season that way either.
The Mustangs struck quickly as sophomore forward Ashley Cottrell took a short lead pass from Saville then buried it toward the far post to give MSU a 1-0 leads in the game's third minute.
"She got in off of an angle, got her hips squared and put it away to the far post," Trimble said. "It was a really composed and good finish."
But Metro State took over in the second third of play during the first half.
'We played a really good first 15 minutes. We kept the pressure on and we did well, then I think we hit a wall," Trimble said. "You have to get give credit to Metro, but we hit a wall and didn't play good soccer there for a bit. The last 30-35 minutes, they really took it to us."
Just like she did all season, Essary kept the Mustangs in the match making seven saves in the opening half including a few of the spectacular variety before the Roadrunners finally broke through with a goal from Noemy Polanco in the 42nd minute.
The Mustangs recovered to control an 8-3 shot edge after intermission producing their best chance in the closing minutes as freshman Nicole Coetzer worked the ball past Metro State keeper Karisa Fernandes but it was saved off of the back line by a defender.
"We were reeling from the first half and I couldn't be happier with how hard the girls worked," Trimble said. "Kallie is the only reason it was 1-1. We could have easily been 4-1, but she made some amazing saves."
Metro State (13-4-3) moves on to face Colorado Mines in the second round Sunday afternoon in Golden. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. (Central Time).
Senior guard Monzaigo Williams poured in a career-high 31 points to lead No. 13-ranked Midwestern State to a 78-71 win over Northwest Missouri State Friday afternoon at the 22nd Annual Hillyard Classic at the MWSU Fieldhouse.
The Mustangs (3-0) battle host school Missouri Western in the finale Saturday night at 8:30 p.m.
Williams was nearly perfect in the opening half firing in six 3-pointers without a miss while connecting on 7-of-8 shots from the floor to score 25 points before intermission.
Even with the senior from Palmdale's shooting display, the Mustangs could never pull away from the Bearcats as MSU led by as many as seven points before settling on a 38-33 lead at the break.
Northwest Missouri came out firing in the second half using a 12-2 run to take control extending the lead to 56-46 on a pair of Dillon Starzl free throws with 11:24 to go.
Led by senior forward Derek Kaster, who tallied 11 of his season-high 15 points after intermission, Midwestern continued to chip away at the lead finally overtaking NWMSU after back-to-back DeJuan Plummer layups gave the Mustangs a 68-66 lead with 2:36 to play.
They wouldn't trail again.
Williams finished game with 31 points, six assists and five rebounds connecting on 7-of-13 shots from the field including six treys while going 11-of-14 from the charity stripe.
Plummer joined Williams and Kaster in double figures with 12 points, three rebounds and three assists in 25 minutes off of the bench.
Dillon Starzl paced the Bearcats with 27 points and eight rebounds as Northwest Missouri dropped to 1-2 on the season.
Junior forward Andrea Carter dropped in 21 points and pulled down nine rebounds to lead Midwestern State to an 89-80 win over Southern Nazarene Friday night in the Comfort Inn Ashbrook Classic at D.L. Ligon Coliseum.
The Mustangs (2-2) close tournament play by taking on Southeastern Oklahoma State Saturday night at 8 p.m. The Savage Storm improved to 2-0 with a 78-75 win over Texas-Permian Basin earlier on Friday.
Carter connected on 6-of-12 shots and went 9-of-10 from the free-throw line while grabbing nine rebounds. She also had four steals and a block in 27 minute, but was one of four Mustangs to record double-figure points.
Junior guard Lisa Hampton drained three 3-pointers on her way to a 6-of-9 shooting night to finish with 17 points in 20 minutes off of the bench.
Senior guard Kirsti Degelia also connected on three 3-pointers to finish with 14 points while junior Shatoia Gober added 14 of her own on 6-of-8 shooting.
Junior guard Dianna Jones tallied a career-best 11 assists to lead the Mustangs to a 50-percent shooting night.
Southern Nazarene's Callee Cox nailed five treys and led the Crimson Storm with a game-high 25 points while Kristin Milster pitched in 15.
SNU, which dropped to 1-2, battles Texas-Permian Basin Saturday night at Ligon Coliseum. Tipoff is set for 6 p.m.