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Dalembert comes up big late as Sixers down Wizards

Dec 1, 2007 - 4:27 AM PHILADELPHIA (Ticker) -- Samuel Dalembert had 19 points and 11 rebounds and keyed a late run with his offense and defense as the Philadelphia 76ers pulled out an 85-84 victory over the Washington Wizards on Friday.

After Caron Butler's layup gave Washington a 78-76 lead at the 6:03 mark of the final quarter, Dalembert scored five of his seven fourth-quarter points and blocked a shot during an 8-0 run over the next five minutes.

"We just went after it," Dalembert said. "It was do-or-die. We were able to get down and play defense and, at the end, we did what we had to do."

Butler hit a 3-pointer to end the slide with 62 seconds remaining to narrow the gap to 84-81.

Dalembert, who scored the final five points of the contest for the Sixers and went 5-of-6 from the foul line in fourth quarter alone, hit his final free throw with 45 seconds remaining to help Philadelphia take an 85-81 advantage.

"I was glad that I made the free throws," Dalembert said. "The game could have gone into overtime. I'm glad we won it quickly because we've got another game (Saturday night vs. New Jersey)."

Butler responded on the next Wizards' possession with another shot from the arc to trim the lead to 85-84 with 31 seconds left.

Philadelphia was unable to answer on the ensuing possession when Andre Iguodala missed his 16th consecutive shot on a driving layup with 12 seconds remaining.

However, Washington was unable to take advantage when it drove the ball down the court and rookie Nick Young inexplicably hoisted an errant 3-pointer with one second remaining that secured the win for the Sixers.

"I thought it was a great shot," Young said. "It felt good coming off my hands (but) it just hit the back of the rim."

"I didn't want to set the play up," Wizards coach Eddie Jordan said. "We had people on the floor who could score. Nick had a rhythm jump shot. He's a rookie, he's (going to) make some shots in his career. It just happened that he didn't make it tonight."

Andre Miller had 18 points and eight assists for Philadelphia, which won for just the second time in six games.

"It was our defense that gave us the opportunity to get some easy baskets," Miller said. "We forced them to take contested shots in the fourth quarter. This was a big win. It's tough to play four games in five nights."

Iguodala, who hit his first three shots of the contest, finished 3-of-19 from the field.

"The first three felt good but, for some reason, I changed my shot," Iguodala said. "I was trying to make plays and get to the basket. They did a good job of making me take tough shots."

Butler scored 20 points and Antawn Jamison added 16 and 11 boards for the Wizards, who have dropped four of their last five games.

"Down the stretch, we feel a little bit short," Butler said. "A couple of loose balls went their way, but we still had a chance at the end. I was trying to will my team to a victory."

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