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Aldridge, Blazers hold off Brewer, Rockets

Mar 12, 2015 - 6:14 AM Portland, OR ( - LaMarcus Aldridge posted 26 points with 14 rebounds as the Portland Trail Blazers held off Corey Brewer and the Houston Rockets with a 105-100 win on Wednesday night.

Nicolas Batum had 18 points, nine rebounds and six assists and Robin Lopez chipped in 16 points and 10 rebounds for Portland, which has won six of seven.

Corey Brewer finished with 23 points for the Rockets, who had their two-game winning streak snapped, but it was his fourth-quarter performance that stood out in this one.

Aldridge scored five straight points early on in the fourth to extend Portland's lead to 89-79.

Patrick Beverley started to lock down on Damian Lillard late, and Brewer took over on the offensive end with Houston star James Harden struggling. Brewer went on a personal 12-5 run, finishing the spurt with a steal and transition layup that cut the Rockets deficit to four with 1:32 left.

Brewer continued his tear following a pair of free throws from Arron Afflalo, netting a trey that brought the visitors within three, 101-98, with 49.9 seconds remaining.

Portland got a huge offensive team rebound off an Afflalo miss, but it was Brewer who plucked Lillard at midcourt and went in for his 17th straight point to cut the margin to one. Afflalo canned two free throws to keep Portland up by three with 12.7 seconds left.

Brewer's hot stretch finally ceased on the following possession, as he front- rimmed a potential tying 3-pointer and Lillard sealed the win from the line.

"I had a good look," said Brewer. "I got the look I wanted, I just hit the front of the rim."

Harden, who scored a combined 89 points in the previous two games against the Blazers this season, was held to 18 points on 7-of-19 shooting.

"I thought we game planned really well for him," said Afflalo.

Both teams started the game with an offensive mindset, as Aldridge netted 11 in the opening quarter and Harden countered with 10. Each team shot at a 52 percent clip and Houston brought a 29-26 lead into the second. The Blazers ended up taking a 54-53 lead at the break.

Aldridge's bucket in the closing seconds of the third concluded a 10-2 run and sent the Blazers into the fourth with an 80-74 lead.

Game Notes

The game marked the first time Portland entertained Houston since Lillard hit the series-winning 3-pointer in last season's first round of the playoffs ... There were 13 lead changes and nine ties ... Lillard had 14 points and eight assists ... Houston scored 25 points off 20 turnovers ... Terrence Jones pumped in 17 points with 12 rebounds in the loss ...Portland outrebounded Houston 60-40.