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Williams leads Jazz to fourth straight win

Nov 18, 2006 - 6:37 AM SEATTLE (Ticker) -- Deron Williams and the Utah Jazz didn't let their previous shortcomings against the Seattle SuperSonics strip them of their league-best record.

Williams collected 27 points - one shy of his career high - and eight assists and Matt Harpring added 21 points off the bench as the Jazz extended their winning streak to four games with a 118-109 victory over the SuperSonics.

The Jazz, who had dropped seven of their previous nine contests against the Sonics, improved to a league-best 8-1. They maintained their edge over Cleveland (7-2), which won earlier Friday, and idle San Antonio (7-2).

"We've snuck up on people," Williams said. "People didn't really talk about us. We have the belief that we are a good team, that we are definitely a playoff team and we are trying to show that right now."

The Jazz created some breathing room early in the fourth quarter when Williams found Derek Fisher for a 3-pointer with 9:55 to go and Harpring followed with a layup a minute later for a 90-81 cushion.

"We had a hard time guarding Harpring; he was so active," Seattle coach Bob Hill said. "He was slashing and cutting and played a whale of a game."

After Seattle crept within five, a 3-pointer and a reverse layup by Williams built the advantage back to 95-85 with 6:56 remaining, and Utah was not challenged thereafter.

Mehmet Okur had 15 points and 11 rebounds and Carlos Boozer followed with 14 and 13 for Utah, which dominated the glass, 47-27, including a 19-5 edge on the offensive end.

"We've got some guys who want to get on the boards and get some rebounds and as long as we have that effort we're going to do a good job every night," Boozer said.

Utah tallied 25 second-chance points.

"They (the Jazz) beat us on the glass tonight," Sonics forward Rashard Lewis confirmed. "They were a lot more aggressive than we were. They didn't make very many mistakes and the main key was that they had a lot of second-chance points. We gave up offensive rebounds and they were able to get second-chance shots."

Ray Allen netted 32 points and Lewis added 24 for the Sonics, who have dropped two in a row after a three-game winning streak.

"We have just got to come out more focused and not be lollygagging around and worrying about one end of the court and that's offense," Lewis said. "We've got to play two ends and right now we are not doing either one of them."

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