Friday , Jan , 30 , 2004 C.Y. Ellis

Spurs fall short against Kings

San Antonio, TX (Sports Network) – Peja Stojakovic scored 22 points and Bobby
Jackson added 18 off the bench, as the Sacramento Kings held off the San
Antonio Spurs, 96-91, at the SBC Center.

“Sometimes it’s going to go and some nights it’s not going to go,” Jackson
explained of his shooting after finishing the contest 7-of-13 from the field.

Mike Bibby posted 17 points to go with six assists for the Kings, who have won
two in a row. Vlade Divac just missed a triple-double with 11 points, nine
rebounds and nine assists.

Tim Duncan had game highs with 35 points and 18 boards for the Spurs, who have
lost three of their last four games. Tony Parker pitched in with 19 points and
six assists while Manu Ginobili had 12 points for San Antonio, which had its
three-game win streak over the Kings stopped.

After Duncan’s layup with just under a minute left got the Spurs within six at
91-85, Ginobili intercepted a Bibby pass and threw the ball ahead for a
breakaway layin by Malik Rose that narrowed the gap to four with 46 ticks
left.

On the ensuing possession, Jackson hit a clutch three-pointer and was fouled
by Bruce Bowen, resulting in a four-point play that all but ended the Spurs’
hopes of a comeback as they trailed 95-87 with 29 seconds to go.

Trailing 76-65 early in the fourth, Bowen finished an 8-0 spurt with back-to-
back three-pointers to get San Antonio within 76-73 three minutes into the
frame.

Sacramento answered again with 10 of the next 15 points to establish an 86-78
margin. The Kings held an eight-point lead until Duncan’s layup.

Both teams were on fire from long range as the Kings buried nine of their 14
three-point attempts while the Spurs connected on 7-of-11 from beyond the arc.

San Antonio quickly jumped out to a 14-3 in the first four minutes of play as
Duncan and Parker combined for 10 points.

The teams then traded buckets before the Kings scored 11 straight points in
just over two minutes to even the score at 16 apiece with 4:18 to play in the
opening stanza. Stojakovic rattled off seven straight Sacramento points to
close out the quarter, including a three at the buzzer that gave the Kings a
27-22 advantage.

Sacramento slowly built its lead to 13 in the second quarter when Bibby made
two free throws with 17 seconds left to make it 52-39, but this time it was
Hedo Turkoglu who beat the buzzer with a trey, trimming the halftime margin to
52-42.

Duncan’s free throw two minutes into the third period kicked off an 8-0 run
that got the Spurs within three at 56-53.

The Kings led 63-59 just past the four-minute mark when they outscored San
Antonio 10-2 in the next two minutes to assume a 73-61 cushion. The Spurs
answered with two straight buckets before Duncan’s 28-foot heave went in but
not before time expired.

“In the first half, mentally, we were poor and lax on defense. In the second
half, we played excellent defense,” said San Antonio head coach Gregg
Popovich. “Give Sacramento credit, they knocked down a three every time we got
within four or five.”

SAC SAN