SILVER CITY, N.M. - The ThunderWolves were able to carry over their stellar effort in a win over New Mexico Highlands Friday night into Saturday's showdown with Western New Mexico, but simply saw a few bounces go the Mustangs' way, losing three sets to one.
After getting blown out in the first set, 25-16, the ThunderWolves showed tenacity in mounting a legitimate upset bid over the RMAC Western Division-leading Mustangs.
The Pack jumped out to a 10-6 lead over the Mustangs in the second set, and didn't let up, even when WNM came within one, closing with a 5-1 flurry to claim the second set, 25-20.
In the third set, the ThunderWolves kept fighting when they were down 22-19, coming as close as 24-23 before the clock struck midnight on the third set, allowing the Mustangs to take a two sets to one lead.
In the fourth and deciding set, the ThunderWolves were engaged in a seesaw battle, trading pratically every point from the first serve before Western New Mexico turned a 17-17 deadlock into a 25-20 win, relying on an 8-3 run to put the ThunderWolves away.
Despite the loss, the Pack showed positive growing pains, giving the Mustangs a run for their money. The ThunderWolves defense and back row had perhaps their best match of the season, holding the Mustangs to an attack percentage of just .096, their third lowest mark this season.
The Pack front line also remained stout, building on a 10- block effort against New Mexico Highlands Friday, and putting up 9.5 blocks on the Mustangs.
The kicker - the Pack committed 12 more attack and service errors than the Mustangs.
The loss drops the Pack to 5-20 overall and 3-14 in RMAC play.
The ThunderWolves will close their season with a two-game home stand against Fort Lewis and Western State on Friday and Saturday at Massari Arena.