SWEETWATER — The Brownwood Lions suffered their second consecutive defeat to close the first half of District 5-4A action, and slipped into a three-way tie for second place following Friday night's 41-35 loss at Sweetwater.

The Lions (18-8, 2-2) trailed 19-8 at the end of the first period and were never able to catch up with the host Mustangs (7-12, 2-2).

“The bottom line is we didn't get off the bus, the first quarter killed us,” said Lions head coach Nadir Dalleh. “They outscored us 19-8 in the first and we outscored them the rest of the quarters. That's on me, I'll take all that blame. The big thing is you have to show up, especially on the road, and this is a tough place to play and a tough place to shoot. We kind of got hot late, but we have to play four quarters.”

Two games ago, the Lions rallied from a 12-point fourth-quarter deficit to stun Snyder (11-8, 2-2), which is also in the three-way tie for second. Brownwood trailed Sweetwater by the exact score it rallied from against Snyder, 35-23, to start the fourth quarter, and closed the gap to six points, 39-33, with 2:15 left on a bucket from Blake Bronnniman.

While Sweetwater managed just two points down the stretch, the Lions went cold again and failed to score until the final seconds.

A.J. McCarty was the only Lion in double figures with 12 points trailed by Zach Strong with nine, Isyah Campos with six on a pair of three-pointers, Bronniman with five and Xavier Porter sank a free throw.

Kobe Clark paced Sweetwater with 15 points trailed by Ky Hoover with eight and J.L. Solis with seven.

The Lions are off Tuesday then host Big Spring on Friday to start the second half of 5-4A action.

“We're 18-8 right now but tonight it looked like our record is the other way around,” Dalleh said. “We just need to regroup. We've got a bye before we start the second half and we've got to get better. There's a couple of key home games we have to take care of.”