Wallace, Richardson help Bobcats cruise past SuperSonicsNov 18, 2007 - 4:02 AM By Derek Smith PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (Ticker) -- Gerald Wallace and the Charlotte Bobcats held the Seattle SuperSonics in check.
Wallace scored 27 points and Jason Richardson added 23 as the Bobcats posted a 100-84 victory over the road-weary SuperSonics on Saturday.
Emeka Okafor had 12 points and 15 rebounds and reserve Matt Carroll scored 14 for Charlotte, which earned just its second win in seven games vs Seattle.
The Bobcats also played tough defense against the Sonics, holding them to a season-low 31 percent (26-of-84) shooting from the field.
"In the second half, we really scrambled on defense and were able to get the ball out into the open court," Wallace said.
Seattle, which had dropped its first eight games to begin the season, had won two straight - including a 126-123 double-overtime victory over the Atlanta Hawks on Friday night.
"We knew they played a double-overtime game (Friday) and were going to get tired," Richardson said. "We were able to get it together and went on some runs to get the win."
In that contest, heralded rookie Kevin Durant drilled a last-second 3-pointer from the top of the key to defeat the Hawks. The Sonics, who earned their first win Wednesday at Miami, also received a career-high 41-points by swingman Damien Wilkins on Friday.
However, Charlotte blocked six shots and outrebounded Seattle, 60-38, while taking control in the second half.
"When we defend and rebound, it makes the game a lot easier on us and makes the game more fun," Richardson added. "It gets the crowd and all of us into the game. We've got to do that more often."
Trailing, 58-50, early in the third quarter, the Bobcats went on a 16-6 run, capped by a 3-pointer by Richardson to take the lead for good at 66-64 with 5:11 remaining in the quarter.
Richardson was almost the whole show in the run, scoring 14 points - including four shots from the arc - while assisting on Charlotte's other basket.
"We were sluggish coming out in the third," Richardson said. "I knew I had to help get it going."
Later in the period, Wallace drained a 3-pointer from the right corner with 1:47 left pushing Charlotte's lead to 74-66.
Walter Herrmann and Carroll sank 3-pointers to open the final period as the Bobcats watched their lead grow to 13 points.
"I saw they were going to play some zone and I was able to knock down a few shots," Carroll said. "I got into a rhythm a little bit and took what they gave me."
Charlotte, which made 10-of-21 shots from the arc, shot 44 percent (39-of-89) from the field for the game.
Chris Wilcox scored 24 points and grabbed nine rebounds and Wilkins and Durant scored 19 and 16, respectively, but combined to shoot just 8-of-28 from the floor for the Sonics, who played four games in five days.
"It was a tough loss for us," Wilcox said. "You have nights like this. It's better that it happened earlier in the season than later. Hopefully, we can build off it and just try to get better. We're a young team and we're still learning."
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