MANSFIELD — No one said the road would be easy for the Red Oak Hawks and first-year head coach Jason Sasser, but the Romans were not assured of potential success, either. For the eighth time in as many tries, the Hawks fell in District 10-5A action Tuesday night, this time to No. 12 Mansfield Timberview, 76-56.

The loss dropped Sasser and company to 6-17 on the season and keeps the Hawks searching for their first win in 2017. Red Oak last won Dec. 29 against Episcopal School of Dallas during the Dallas ISD Holiday Invitational.

Despite the final scores, the Hawks have remained competitive in each of their district games this season. Tuesday was no exception, as Red Oak held a 29-27 lead at the half.

Unfortunately, (20-4, 7-1) Mansfield Timberview came out of the break en fuego. Behind 11 points from Tim Johnson and eight more by Isaac Likekele, the Wolves outscored the Hawks 29-8 to take a commanding 56-37 lead into the fourth quarter.

Red Oak regained its footing on offense over the final eight minutes but was still clipped by one, 20-19, during the final frame.

Craig Smith led the way for the Hawks with 21 points, with 14 points coming in the second half. Donavan Burks scored 13 points, Keymond Taylor added 11 points, while Emerson Wallace and Jonathan Chapa each added four points, Frank Williams scored two points, and Mark Freeney rounded out the scoring with one.

Red Oak returns home Friday to host Waxahachie in game No. 2 of the district’s second half. The Hawks fell to the Indians 63-43 on Jan. 3.

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Travis M. Smith, @Travis5mith

(469) 517-1470