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Lowry and Martin lift Rockets over T'Wolves

Jan 24, 2012 - 5:07 AM Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) - Kyle Lowry posted his second career triple- double while Kevin Martin finished with 31 points, and the Rockets downed the Timberwolves, 107-92, for their seventh consecutive victory.

Lowry totaled 16 points, 10 assists and 10 boards for Houston, which hadn't won seven in a row since a 22-game streak during the 2007-08 season.

Monday's victory was considerably more comfortable than the Rockets' last two -- a 90-88 overtime decision against New Orleans on Thursday, and Saturday's 105-102 victory over the Spurs.

"We're playing well right now, so we want to keep on going," said Kevin McHale, who is in his first season as Rockets head coach. He twice coached the Timberwolves (2005, '09) after leaving his front office position with the team.

Kevin Love tallied 39 points and 12 rebounds for Minnesota, hitting all five of his three-point tries and 13-of-19 shots overall. But he sat for the final few minutes of Monday's contest with an apparent eye injury, and the Timberwolves closed out their second straight loss.

The Timberwolves fell behind early and trailed by double digits during the first half, but battled back to get within seven at halftime and continued to chip away at Houston's lead in the third quarter.

After Love tied the game, 63-63, on a free throw with 4:55 to play, Houston's Patrick Patterson sank a jumper. But Luke Ridnour followed with a pullup jumper and Love followed with a three. After a series of misses by both teams, Derrick Williams' dunk gave Minnesota a 70-65 edge.

But the lead was the Timberwolves' largest of the game, and also short-lived. The Rockets followed with a 19-1 run that bridged into the fourth quarter. Goran Dragic hadn't scored until the rally, but poured in eight points, closing the third quarter with a layup for a 76-71 lead and ending the run with a foul shot to make it a 13-point contest.

Minnesota didn't get closer than nine in the remaining 10 minutes.

"I don't know if we got tired, but we turned it over at the end of the third quarter, they took a five-point lead and kind of stretched it out, and that was it," said Timberwolves head coach Rick Adelman, who was the Rockets' coach for four seasons before parting ways with the club last April.

The Rockets began the game on a 10-2 run and were up by as many as 12 in the first quarter. Martin drilled a three with 2:28 left to end a nine-point burst and make it a 24-12 contest, and Houston carried a 28-19 lead into the second.

The Timberwolves, though, began the new quarter with baskets by Williams and Ricky Rubio, and stayed close. While they didn't completely erase the Rockets' lead, they entered the break facing a 54-47 deficit.

Game Notes

The Rockets' 22-game winning streak is the second-longest in NBA history...Lowry recorded his first triple-double on March 20 of last year, when he recorded 28 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists to help Houston defeat Utah by a 110-108 margin...The Timberwolves committed 20 turnovers, leading to 27 Rockets points.