Spurs hold off HawksApr 6, 2011 - 5:05 AM Atlanta, GA (Sports Network) - Manu Ginobili scored 12 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter as the San Antonio Spurs topped the Atlanta Hawks, 97-90, at Philips Arena.
Tony Parker finished with a game-high 26 points and Tim Duncan posted 17 points and six rebounds for the Spurs, who lead the Lakers by 3 1/2 games for the top spot in the Western Conference.
"I thought our guys were really good, we changed up a few things and they executed well," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. "I think we kept (the Hawks) off stride because we changed it up several times."
Joe Johnson paced the Hawks with 21 points. Jamal Crawford scored 20 in a reserve role and Kirk Hinrich finished with 13 points before fouling out late in the game. The Hawks have dropped consecutive games, but still hold the No. 5 seed in the Eastern Conference.
Atlanta played without forward Josh Smith, who sat with a sore right knee. And unfortunately for the Hawks, replacement Jason Collins left the game in the second quarter after spraining his left ankle and did not return.
After trailing 46-43 at halftime, the Spurs used the opening minutes of the third to trim their slight margin and take the lead. Parker's bucket 3 1/2 minutes into the stanza tied the game at 52, and he later he connected on a pair from the line to give San Antonio the lead.
The Spurs widened their lead to as high as four in the final minutes of the third quarter, but an Al Horford turnaround jumper with 53 seconds remaining cut the San Antonio lead to 66-65 entering the final stanza.
"I think the Spurs picked up the tempo a little bit (in the fourth quarter), and I think they took us out of some things we wanted to run," Horford said. "We did miss some open looks but you have got to give them credit because they played great."
San Antonio widened its lead to as high as 10 in the fourth quarter as an Antonio McDyess layup with 2:57 left gave the Spurs a 92-82 advantage. Their lead never fell below five down the stretch.
The Hawks shot 50 percent from the field in the first quarter and held the potent Spurs offense to only 16 points while yielding a 21-16 advantage entering the second. San Antonio responded, cutting its deficit to three entering the break.
The Spurs ended a four-game road skid with the win...San Antonio is 25-14 on the road this season...George Hill scored 13 for the Spurs...Horford posted 12 points, nine rebounds and five assists in the loss...San Antonio held a 39-25 rebounding margin and made 15-of-18 from the free throw line in the fourth quarter...The Spurs have won nine of 10 against the Hawks.
- SAN ANTONIO: 97
Apr 5 9:24 PM
- SAN ANTONIO: 66
End of 3rd
Apr 5 8:44 PM
- SAN ANTONIO: 43
Apr 5 8:05 PM
- SAN ANTONIO: 16
End of 1st
Apr 5 7:34 PM
- SAN ANTONIO: 0
1st Quarter - 12:00
Apr 5 7:14 PM
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