Wednesday , Dec , 29 , 2004 C.Y. Ellis

Parker, Spurs snap Suns’ 11-game win streak

=== Parker, Spurs snap Suns’ 11-game win streak ===

San Antonio, TX (Sports Network) – Tony Parker delivered 29 points and Tim
Duncan finished with 16 along with 12 rebounds as San Antonio stopped
Phoenix’s 11-game win streak with a convincing 115-94 victory in a battle
between two Western Conference powers at the SBC Center.

Parker, who netted 27 points in Sunday’s triumph over Boston, made 14-of-20
shots from the field to lead the Spurs to their fourth straight win and 15th
in 18 games. Malik Rose contributed 15 points and six boards in 18 minutes off
the bench.

Amare Stoudemire poured in 37 points for the Suns, who failed in their attempt
to set a club record for consecutive wins. Steve Nash, who entered the contest
as the NBA’s assist leader with more than 11 assists per game, finished with
12 points but was held to just four assists.

“They just kicked our butts,” said Nash. :Maybe that’s good for this team, to
face a tough challenge like this…We can make this a turning point in our
season. We can learn that we are not a finished product.”

San Antonio outscored the Suns 54-40 in the second half and held the prolific
Phoenix offense to just 40 percent shooting on the night. The Suns failed to
reach 100 points for the first time since their last defeat, a 97-93 setback
to Minnesota on December 3.

“Everybody understood that defense is what was going to do it for us,” said
San Antonio guard Bruce Bowen. “We know they can score points, but let’s see
what they can do against hands being in their face on contested shots.”

The Spurs trailed 43-34 with 9:33 left in the first half but put together a
12-2 run to move in front. Robert Horry began the spurt with a three-pointer
and Parker capped it with a trey which put San Antonio up 46-45 midway through
the second quarter.

Two free throws by Stoudemire put Phoenix back on top, but the Suns went
without a field goal for nearly a five-minute stretch and the Spurs took
advantage. Two baskets by Parker and a three-point play from Duncan gave the
hosts a 53-47 lead with 4:16 remaining before intermission. A jumper by Rose
at the buzzer sent San Antonio into the break with a 61-54 edge.

The Spurs maintained a seven-point cushion until a Duncan layup followed by
Bowen’s three-pointer and a basket by Parker extended their advantage to 72-58
with 7:31 left in the third quarter. After Stoudemire’s jumper cut the
deficit to 12, San Antonio answered with eight consecutive points, capped by
Parker’s three-point play with 4:50 remaining in the stanza which made the
score 81-60.

San Antonio closed out the third with seven straight points and outscored
Phoenix 32-15 for the quarter to claim a commanding 93-69 lead.

A 10-0 flurry ending with Joe Johnson’s three-pointer gave Phoenix a 23-20
lead with 4:22 to go in the first quarter. The Suns ended a fast-paced opening
period up 35-32.