WICHITA FALLS, Texas -- Midwestern State rolled to a 3-1 win over Eastern New Mexico to claim its 10th win in its regular season finale Sunday afternoon at the MSU Soccer Field.
The Mustangs close the campaign with a 10-2-5 record and await a long shot selection into their seventh NCAA Division II Postseason Tournament berth set for release Monday night.
"It was a tough Sunday game," MSU coach Doug Elder said. "Knowing we didn't have a chance (at postseason play), it was tough to get the guys up for it."
Sophomore forward Len Smith gave the Mustangs the early advantage when he collected a carom off of an ENMU defender and deposited it for his team leading 10th goal of the season in the 15th minute.
Eastern New Mexico struck back for the equalizer a minute later when Eishu Kanemitsu emerged to knock a loose ball in the box into the net for his sixth goal of the season.
But the Mustangs regained the advantage in the 30th minute on the strength of Isaac Pile's first goal of the season. The junior from Mansfield took a pass from senior midfielder Aaron Douthit and worked free on the right wing to beat ENMU keeper Fredrik Widfeldt to the far post to give MSU a 2-1 lead.
MSU senior forward David Freeland put the match away with his second tally of the season in the 53rd minute. The Midland native ran onto a nicely struck through ball from B.A. Catney to give the Mustangs a 2-goal lead.
Midwestern entered the week outside of the South Central Region rankings, but claimed victories of No. 3 West Texas A&M on Friday before taking down 5th-ranked Eastern New Mexico. The top three teams advance to the postseason as the Mustangs were also behind No. 1 Regis (Colo.), No. 2 Incarnate Word (Texas) and No. 4 Colorado Mines.
"It was a tough season," Elder said. "If we don't get in, we'll have a lot of returners that now know every game counts."
The Mustangs finished with a program record five draws and never trailed in regulation. MSU also recorded 10 wins in its 14th consecutive season.
Eastern New Mexico ends the campaign at 10-7-1.