Cousins, Kings rally to beat SunsJan 3, 2011 - 7:42 AM Sacramento, CA (Sports Network) - DeMarcus Cousins scored five of his 28 points during a 10-point game-ending run that the Sacramento Kings used to upend the Phoenix Suns, 94-89.
The Suns led by five with three minutes to play, but missed their final three shots and turned the ball over twice to enable the Kings' rally. Cousins, who added eight rebounds and six assists in the game, recorded a three-point play and two free throws during the stretch.
Francisco Garcia added 20 points and 11 rebounds for the Kings, who have recently shown signs that they are figuring out how to win games.
Sacramento lost 11 of its first 12 games in December, including four by five points or fewer and one in overtime. But last Wednesday, Tyreke Evans drained a buzzer-beater from beyond halfcourt to give the Kings a 100-98 win over Memphis, and after losing in Denver on Saturday, they came up with more late- game heroics.
Omri Casspi, who hit a go-ahead three-pointer with 25.6 seconds left, finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds as Sacramento snapped a six-game losing streak against Phoenix.
"It was a great team effort down the stretch," Cousins said. "We played smart, played some great team defense, and we got a lot of stops."
Steve Nash had 20 points and 12 assists to pace the Suns, who blew a 14-point lead and have dropped five of six overall. Vince Carter added 17 points, while Marcin Gortat provided 16 off the bench.
Gortat sank a layup about 90 seconds into the fourth quarter, giving Phoenix a 79-65 advantage.
But Cousins, who scored 13 points in the final frame, followed with two baskets to begin Sacramento's comeback. Later in the quarter and still facing a 10-point deficit, the Kings got three scores within a minute to trim the deficit to 87-84 with 3:37 to play.
Gortat answered with a jumper, but that was Phoenix's final score. Pooh Jeter began the Kings' game-ending run with a jumper. After Grant Hill missed a shot at the other end, Sacramento got an offensive rebound that led to Cousins' three-point play with 1:48 on the clock.
That tied the game at 89, and the score stayed that way heading into the final minute. Carter missed a three-pointer with about 43 seconds left, and Casspi grabbed the rebound before hitting the go-ahead trey.
The Suns' Mickael Pietrus missed a potential game-tying shot before Cousins was fouled with 15.3 ticks left. He made both for a five-point edge, and Casspi stole the ball on Phoenix's final possession.
"We just stopped scoring," Nash said. "We missed some layups, we missed some open shots, and put ourselves in a tough position."
It was an ending befitting a game that featured several big point swings and six lead changes.
Sacramento made only 6-of-26 shots in the first quarter and faced a 27-17 deficit, but opened the second quarter with an 18-4 run. Casspi closed it with a three for a 35-31 edge.
Phoenix went back ahead, though, and ended the half on an eight-point burst for a 48-39 lead.
The Suns led by as many as 12 in the third quarter, and held a 73-65 advantage moving to the fourth.
Carl Landry added 11 points and 12 boards for the Kings...Hill ended with 13 points for the Suns...Sacramento held a 60-32 rebounding advantage and held a 21-9 advantage in second-chance points.
- PHOENIX: 89
Jan 2 11:28 PM
- PHOENIX: 73
End of 3rd
Jan 2 10:53 PM
- PHOENIX: 48
Jan 2 10:11 PM
- PHOENIX: 27
End of 1st
Jan 2 9:37 PM
- PHOENIX: 0
1st Quarter - 15:00
Jan 2 9:11 PM
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