LAS VEGAS, N.M. (GoThunderWolves.com - Oct. 29, 2013) - CSU-Pueblo couldn't close the gap in a four-set loss to New Mexico Highlands Tuesday night, falling 26-24, 20-25, 28-26, 25-15.
The night was defined by two late leads slipping away as sets one and three broke for the Cowgirls, putting the Pack in a hole it couldn't recover from.
In the first set, CSU-Pueblo led by as much as 20-16 late and was at game point, 24-22, before the Cowgirls scored four straight points, two coming on errors by the ThunderWolves, as New Mexico Highlands stole away the first set 26-24.
After CSU-Pueblo recovered in the second set, hitting .250 en route to a 25-20 win, it was the same story in the third set.
After trailing for much of the third set, CSU-Pueblo had a chance to give New Mexico Highlands a taste of their own medicine, coming back from a 24-22 would-be game-point situation to score three straight to go up 25-24.
Once again on game-point, two ThunderWolf errors down the stretch allowed the Cowgirls to get back on the advantage, eventually outlasting CSU-Pueblo 28-26.
The fight was drained out of the Pack in the fourth set, as the Cowgirls cruised 25-15 to put the match away.
The loss gives the Pack a setback as it battles for the final playoff berth in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference. Four teams are separated by two games or less in the standings, all battling for only one final playoff spot, and CSU-Pueblo is now a half-game behind UC-Colorado Springs and Fort Lewis for that final spot, and a game ahead of New Mexico Highlands with five conference games remaining.
CSU-Pueblo will face Western New Mexico in Silver City, N.M. Friday night before taking on Colorado College in a non-conference matchup next Tuesday night.