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Rockets Send Lakers To Fourth Loss In A Row

Houston, TX (Sports Network) – Shane Battier hit back-to-back three-pointers with under three minutes to go to give the Houston Rockets the lead for good in a 109-99 victory over the struggling Los Angeles Lakers.

Battier finished with 11 points in the fourth and 17 overall for the Rockets, who snapped a three-game losing streak to the Lakers with the victory.

Kevin Martin led Houston with 22 points, while Louis Scola added 14 in the win.

Kobe Bryant scored a game-high 27 points for Los Angeles, which has lost four straight for the first time since April 8-13, 2007, and the first time since Pau Gasol was acquired from Memphis.

Lamar Odom provided a season-high 25 points and 11 boards, while Gasol finished with only eight points in defeat.

The Lakers missed their final seven field goal attempts, as Houston finished the game on a 15-4 run to win going away.

Bryant’s 19-foot turnaround jumper with 3:10 left gave the Lakers a 97-94 lead, but it was the last field goal Los Angeles made in the game.

Kyle Lowry passed in the corner to Battier, who drilled a three-pointer for a tie game with 2:50 left. After Bryant missed at the other end, the Rockets ran an identical play to find Battier again in the corner, and he hit another three for a 100-97 lead with 2 1/2 minutes to go.

Bryant responded with a pair of free throws, but Battier had another answer with a 19-footer to keep the margin at three as the clock ticked below two minutes.

The Lakers went ice cold from there, missing their last six shots without getting to the line once. Battier was fouled on a three-point attempt inside a minute to play and drained all three free throws for a 105-99 edge, essentially sealing the outcome with 41 seconds to play.

Los Angeles grabbed a 26-23 lead after the first quarter and maintained a three-point advantage, 56-53, heading to the third.

The Rockets narrowly outscored the Lakers, 23-22, in the third to trim their deficit to 78-76 after 36 minutes of play, though Los Angeles increased its lead to 91-84 on a pair of Matt Barnes free throws with seven minutes to play.

Game Notes

The season series is tied, 1-1…Odom shot 11-of-16 from the field…Battier went 4-of-6 from beyond the arc…Each team scored 42 points in the paint…The Lakers are a pedestrian 5-4 on the road and next take on the Kings at home on Friday.

Celebrate with fellow Rockets fans at The Dream Shake.

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