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Smith helps Hawks edge Pacers

Mar 7, 2012 - 5:12 AM Indianapolis, IN (Sports Network) - Josh Smith had 27 points and nine rebounds in the Hawks' 101-96 win over the Pacers on Tuesday.

Jannero Pargo added 16 points while Zaza Pachulia had 12 and 10 rebounds for the Hawks, who began a six-game road trip with a victory. They have won three in a row -- all without leading scorer Joe Johnson.

David West scored 24 points to lead the Pacers, who have dropped two straight after a season-high six-game win streak. Danny Granger chipped in 19 points, but missed a potential tying three-pointer with 17 seconds remaining.

"We didn't defend the three well and didn't do a good enough job on the defensive glass," said Indiana coach Frank Vogel. "I don't think we were ourselves the last two games."

The Hawks led by as many as eight in the fourth, but two free throws from George Hill had the Pacers within four, 97-93, with two minutes to play.

Granger pulled Indiana closer with 23 seconds to go, finishing a driving layup, drawing the foul and sinking the subsequent free throw to make it 97-96.

Down 99-96 after a pair of Jerry Stackhouse free throws, Granger pulled up from the top of the key, but found the front of the rim. The rebound eventually went to Marvin Williams, who hit two foul shots to seal the Atlanta win.

"[The Pacers] are too good to where they are not just going to go away," said Atlanta coach Larry Drew. "Particularly on the road, we have to learn to withstand the runs. I'm proud of our guys for weathering the storm. They didn't panic."

The game was tied at 10 midway through the first when the Hawks took control, reeling off a 15-5 run. Smith had a three-point play early in the surge before capping it with a trey for a 25-15 advantage.

Atlanta continued to play frontrunner, leading 29-22 at the buzzer before stretching the margin to as many as 16 in the second.

The Pacers, though, proved resilient. They closed the quarter with a 6-0 run, cutting the deficit to 58-54 at the break, then took the lead, 71-69, on West's layup late in the third.

The advantage was short-lived. Atlanta scored seven straight to go on top, 76-71, after three.

Game Notes

Johnson is out due to an ailing left knee. He is averaging 17.6 points per game...The Hawks improved to 12-0 this season when Smith scores 20-plus points...Atlanta has won 11 of its last 13 games against Indiana...The Pacers saw their four-game home win streak come to and end.