Defeat at Shrewsbury realistically ends Rotherham's hopes of a late play-off push but new manager Steve Evans highlighted several positives.
Ryan Cresswell headed the Millers into a second-minute lead but Shrewsbury, now unbeaten at the Greenhous Meadow for 30 games, hit back with two goals from Terry Gornell and another from Aaron Wildig to win 3-1.
"We're disappointed but ultimately when you play the top sides it doesn't matter how much of the ball you've got or how much passion you've got, as you will be punished," said Evans following his first game in charge after his move from Crawley. "We got a great start and went in at half time 1-1. It was a shame really because we should have been three up and the game should have been over as a contest."
And Evans insisted he was confident he had inherited a talented squad capable of taking Rotherham forward.
"We've seen here enough to say there's a number of players here that will play a big part going forward. Every game we have between now and May 5 will tell us a little bit more," he added. "You don't come many times to this stadium and have the home crowd on the verge of booing really. That was the quality of the performance and I don't think Shrewsbury were in the game at all until their first goal.
"They got a spark from that, a lift, and they've got good players. That's why they're up there challenging to get promoted."