Ginobili carries Spurs past 76ersJan 15, 2008 - 5:04 AM By Brian Guerra PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
SAN ANTONIO(Ticker) - Manu Ginobili sure has a knack for timing.
Ginobili scored 20 points off the bench, including key shots late in the fourth quarter, to lift the San Antonio Spurs to an 89-82 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday night.
Tim Duncan did not score his first points until 6:53 left in the first half but finished with 18 points and 16 rebounds for the Spurs, who shot just 13 percent in the third, but managed to trail by just one heading into the fourth.
At one point, the Spurs missed 16 straight shots.
"They did a good job of keeping us away from the basket," Duncan said. "But we can't miss that many shots in a row against good teams, or that's a blowout right there."
Michael Finley, who finished with 14 points, hit a 16-foot jumper that tied the game at 71-71, but Andre Miller countered with a 22-footer. Ginobili knocked down two free throws with 4:53 left that tied the game at 75-75, but Miller responded with another jumper.
Then Ginobili took over, hitting back-to-back 3-pointers to give the Spurs an 81-77 lead with 3:41 remaining.
"I guess I just needed one, and the one from the corner really pumped me up," Ginobili said. "After that, everything changed. So, every opportunity I had, I took them, and they were going in."
Tony Parker hit a jumper on the next possession, and Ginobili added another pair of 3-pointers for a nine-point lead with less than two left.
"He's unbelievable. He really is," Duncan said. "He's fun to watch. He pulled us out of another hole there. It's his time, that fourth quarter when things get tight. His ability to create shots and take and make big shots, it saved us."
Spurs coach Gregg Popovich was thankful Ginobili showed up when he did.
"We really need to thank Manu for (Monday's) win," Popovich said. "Obviously, he was the one who stepped up and made big shots down the stretch."
Willie Green scored nine of his 21 points in the first quarter and Samuel Dalembert added 12 and 19 rebounds for the Sixers, who have lost seven straight games overall.
Philadelphia was pleased with its effort for most of the game.
"I thought we played really good basketball until the last couple of minutes," Miller said. "Ginobili just got open out there. He took the shots we gave him, and they went in."
San Antonio held a slim 33-32 edge after a Dalembert's jumper, but Ime Udoka's 3-pointer sparked a 14-3 run that helped create a 52-46 edge at the break.
SAN ANTONIO 89 FINAL
Jan 14 11:06 PM
SAN ANTONIO 64 END, 3RD QTR
Jan 14 10:33 PM
SAN ANTONIO 52 HALFTIME
Jan 14 9:39 PM
SAN ANTONIO 27 END, 1ST QTR
Jan 14 9:08 PM
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