Friday , Dec , 02 , 2005 C.Y. Ellis

Hornets go West in win over Sixers

Oklahoma City, OK (Sports Network) – David West scored 22 points and made the
go-ahead basket with 50.4 seconds left to play as the Hornets downed
Philadelphia 88-86 at the Ford Center.

Chris Paul compiled 16 points and nine assists while P.J. Brown finished with
12 points and 14 rebounds for the Hornets, who wasted a 13-point halftime lead
but closed the game out with a 10-2 run to win for the fourth time in five
games.

Allen Iverson dropped in 34 points and dished out nine assists in the loss,
the 76ers’ sixth in eight games. Chris Webber added 24 points and 11 boards
while Samuel Dalembert pulled down 15 rebounds for Philadelphia.

The teams were deadlocked at 86-86 in the final minute when the Hornets’
Speedy Claxton missed a baseline jumper, but West grabbed the carom and laid
it in to break the tie.

The Sixers had a chance to move back in front, but Webber was called for a
charge after driving the baseline with 29 seconds to go. Desmond Mason then
misfired for New Orleans/Oklahoma City on the other end, and Iverson dribbled
up the court and fired a three-pointer that just missed the mark at the
buzzer.

Trailing 86-79 with 3 1/2 minutes left to play, Mason sank two foul shots and
Paul followed with a steal and layup to make it a three-point game. Mason then
threw down a dunk and was fouled hard with 1:28 remaining, but shook it off
and hit the ensuing free throw to draw even.

The Hornets held a 59-48 lead early in the second half, but failed to score
for nearly a six-minute stretch in the third quarter and the Sixers took
advantage.

Iverson ignited a 12-0 run with a three-pointer and Kyle Korver ended the
spurt with a basket from beyond the arc to put Philadelphia up 60-59. The
teams would trade baskets over the remainder of the period, with the 76ers
taking a 64-63 edge into the final stanza on Webber’s tip-in in the final
minute.

The Hornets scored just nine points on 4-of-17 shooting during the third
quarter.

The teams were tied at 70-70 with 8 1/2 minutes to go before Philadelphia
reeled off six straight points, ending with Webber’s jumper off an Iverson
assist. The Sixers had their largest lead of the night at 82-74 when Iverson
made two from the line with just under five minutes left.

The Hornets were aggressive in the game’s early stages, going to the free-
throw line 17 times in the first quarter and knocking down 14 of those
attempts to help build a 28-23 lead at period’s end. West paved the way with
12 points on 5-of-7 shooting over the opening 12 minutes.

A 5-0 run to start the second quarter, capped by Brown’s midrange jumper two
minutes in, extended the Hornets’ advantage to 10 points.

Philadelphia would close the gap to seven on Lee Nailon’s layup midway through
the second frame, but the Hornets answered with an 8-2 run and went up 45-32
when Paul fed J.R. Smith for a dunk with 3:27 to go in the half. A Paul three-
pointer with two minutes left increased the advantage to 50-36, and New
Orleans/Oklahoma City would take a comfortable 54-41 lead into the break.

Game Notes

Philadelphia has now lost five straight on the road and are 2-6 away from home
this year…The 76ers posted a 103-91 victory over the Hornets in Philadelphia
on November 21…Smith finished with 13 points for the Hornets and Mason had
12 in the win…Philadelphia entered the game leading the NBA in scoring with
a 103.9 points per game average.

PHI NOH