Eastern New Mexico's Carolyn Armijo dealt a serious blow to Midwestern State's Lone Star Conference postseason hopes Sunday afternoon at the MSU Soccer Field.
The junior midfielder tracked down a rebound to knock it into an open net to provide the lone goal to give ENMU's a 1-0.
"We had numerous opportunities that we'd like to think would be two or three goals, but you leave a team in long enough, there's a chance you don't come out with the result you are searching for," MSU coach Damian Clarke said. "That's obviously what happened to us today. We're learning the hard way. They had one shot and they scored."
The Mustangs dominated throughout the second half controlling an 11-3 shot advantage following intermission, but were unable to cash in on several key opportunities.
Senior midfielder Katy Catney crushed a free kick off of the crossbar in the 50th minute, and then ENMU goalkeeper Fabienne Wilson made a pair of crucial saves down the stretch.
She denied MSU junior forward Ashley Cottrell smash from the left wing in the 64th minute, then made a save in traffic on junior defender Alex Edwards' serve off of a short corner chance in the 82nd minute.
Eastern New Mexico needed just one chance provided by Armijo when she broke free through the midfielder in the 77th minute.
"We broke down in the midfield," Clarke said. "Once (Armijo) started dribbling, we stabbed a little bit and didn't just hold her long enough to allow the defense to get set. We were all running backwards when she hit a fantastic shot. (Goalkeeper) Courtney (Burnette) made an unbelievable save."
The save caromed toward the right corner toward ENMU forward Morgan Fairbanks, who launched another shot off of Burnette's leg back to Armijo. Armijo settled the ball and sent it into the net.
"We've said a million times in the last two weeks, they hunted for the rebound and we didn't do it well enough," Clarke said.
Eastern New Mexico improved to 8-6 overall and 5-3 in LSC play for a total of 15 points. The Zias are tied with Texas A&M-Commerce with 15 total points -- one behind Angelo State.
For the moment, the Mustangs (8-4-5, 3-4-2) cling to sole possession of the fourth and final berth in the LSC Postseason Tournament with 11 points just one point ahead of Texas Woman's, who holds the head-to-head tiebreaker with MSU.
The Mustangs close out the regular season against LSC-leading Angelo State Friday night at the MSU Soccer Field. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m.