Ginobili, Spurs snap skid vs. BobcatsJan 21, 2008 - 10:13 PM By Derek Smith PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (Ticker) -- Manu Ginobili scored 16 points off the bench to spark the visiting San Antonio Spurs to a 95-86 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats on Monday afternoon.
It was a much-needed road win for the Spurs, who won for just the second time in eight tries on the road and are beginning a stretch in which they are away from home for 12 of 14 games.
"We were really aggressive and played very physically," San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich said. "We were doing a great job of sharing the ball and our defense was strong for 48 minutes."
Tim Duncan dominated the paint for the Spurs with a 19-point, 10-rebound performance that also included five blocked shots and numerous second thoughts from the Bobcats on offense.
"It was important to break the losing streak on many different levels," Duncan said. "Getting a win on the road, breaking the losing streak, starting to get some confidence back, starting to feel good about ourselves a little bit more, it all goes into getting a win on the road."
Ginobili's 3-pointer in the fourth pushed the Spurs out to an 80-71 advantage. After trading baskets, Duncan gave San Antonio its first double-digit lead at 88-77.
"It's a good way to start," Ginobili said. "We're really looking forward to starting a nice streak, but more than anything to start playing better."
Michael Finley scored 11 of the Spurs' 19 third-quarter points and made a trio of 3-pointers to keep Charlotte at bay. Each of Finley's treys ended a Charlotte run, with his final basket giving the Spurs a nine-point cushion.
"We really executed the defense the way they were supposed to do," Ginobili said. "It was very aggressive and we didn't let (Gerald Wallace) get to the rim."
Ime Udoka's 3-pointer gave San Antonio the lead for good on the opening possession of the second quarter, 29-26. The Spurs took a 54-47 lead at the half.
Tony Parker chipped in 16 points for the Spurs while Finley added 13.
"Today was a challenge," Finley said. "We took on a team in Charlotte that has a lot of great scorers. Defensively, we just wanted to buckle down and try to contain them."
Emeka Okafor led Charlotte with 21 points and 10 rebounds. Wallace, who finished with 15 points and nine boards, left the game in the fourth quarter with a strained left calf and did not return.
"I think I might have pushed myself over the limit as far as what I could and couldn't do out there," Wallace said. "I lost all of my explosiveness and just didn't have it today."
Jason Richardson scored 13 points on just 5-of-18 shooting while former Spur Nazr Mohammed chipped in 12 off the bench for the Bobcats, who fell to 1-6 all-time against San Antonio.
Charlotte led by as many as eight in the opening quarter but managed a total of just 59 points over the final three periods and finished just 2-of-14 from the arc.
"This was probably one game that I don't feel that bad about losing," Bobcats coach Sam Vincent said. "We played pretty well - we lost to a championship team.
"My guys were off a little bit with their shots. If they would have made the shots that they normally make, then we probably could have won the game."
Raymond Felton collected 10 points and six assists while fellow point guard Jeff McInnis dished out nine assists for the Bobcats, who had their three-game home winning streak snapped.
The Bobcats' tough home schedule continues with a visit from the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night.
SAN ANTONIO 95
CHARLOTTE 86 FINAL
Jan 21 3:14 PM
SAN ANTONIO 73
CHARLOTTE 67 END, 3RD QTR
Jan 21 2:45 PM
SAN ANTONIO 54
CHARLOTTE 47 HALFTIME
Jan 21 2:01 PM
SAN ANTONIO 26
CHARLOTTE 27 END, 1ST QTR
Jan 21 1:35 PM
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