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Rockets Fall Just Short Of Comeback, 26-6 Run Not Enough

Dallas, TX (Sports Network) – Jose Barea made a key jumper with 32.9 seconds remaining, as the Dallas Mavericks held off the Houston Rockets, 111-106.

Barea finished with 19 points off the bench for the Mavericks, who have won three in a row. Tyson Chandler chipped in 21 points and 15 rebounds and Dirk Nowitzki scored 18 points.

“I thought that we played three good quarters of basketball and one quarter of subpar basketball,” Mavericks head coach Rick Carlisle said. “So, I’m glad that we won. I think that the other quarter from tonight is upside and we have to get over it. I don’t have any excuses for it. They are a hard-charging team that keeps coming at you and we have to do a better job when they do.”

Luis Scola donated 30 points and eight boards for the Rockets, who saw a brief two-game winning streak come to an end. Kevin Martin and Chuck Hayes added 27 and 16 points, respectively.

Dallas used a 7-0 run early in the third quarter to extend its lead to 71-49. But the rest of the stanza belonged to the Rockets.

Houston put together a 26-6 burst to get right back into the game. Shane Battier made two three-pointers during the stretch, with the latter cutting the gap to 77-75 with 4:06 remaining.

Jason Terry’s jumper and layup gave Dallas an 83-77 margin with under 2 1/2 minutes left.

Jason Kidd’s jumper and Barea’s layup at the end of the frame put the Mavericks up by seven, 88-81, heading to the fourth.

Trailing 102-91 with 5:52 to play, the Rockets put together a 12-2 run to make things interesting. Scola tallied eight points during the stretch, including a short jumper with 51.8 seconds left to make it 104-103.

Barea responded at the other end with a jumper to make it a three-point contest. After Scola missed a driving layup, Nowitzki made 1-of-2 from the foul line to give Dallas a 107-103 edge with 23.1 ticks to go.

Aaron Brooks missed a layup for Houston, and Terry went 4-of-4 from the line in the final 14.3 seconds to seal the victory.

The Mavericks shot 52.2 percent from the field in the first quarter to take a 33-15 lead.

Dallas was even better in the second period, making 56 percent of its shots. But Houston shot a sizzling 60 percent from the floor in the frame to get within 64-47 at the break.

“You can not dig yourselves into a 25 point hole before you come to play,” Martin said. “I don’t know what inspired us, when coach yelled at us or the embarrassment of being down 25, but you can’t, especially on the road to a team of Dallas’ caliber, get down 25 and expect to win.”

Images by eflon used in background images under a Creative Commons license. Thank you.