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Roy, Aldridge help Blazers edge Mavericks

Apr 13, 2008 - 6:02 AM By Kasey Postlewaite PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

PORTLAND, Oregon (Ticker) -- Brandon Roy scored 23 points and LaMarcus Aldridge added 22 as the Portland Trail Blazers held on for a 108-105 triumph over the Dallas Mavericks on Saturday.

Jarrett Jack collected 19 points and 10 assists and Channing Frye had 15 and 10 rebounds for the Trail Blazers, who shot a blistering 58 percent (44-of-75) from the field.

"They made every single shot," Dallas coach Avery Johnson said. "They were on fire tonight. Even when we played good defense, they made us pay. They were fired up and ready to go."

With the loss, the Mavericks (50-30) cannot catch idle Phoenix (53-27) and all but assured themselves the seventh seed in the Western Conference Playoffs, one year after securing the top spot With a 67-15 record.

"It doesn't even matter ... once your in, you're in," Mavs guard Jason Terry said. "We just want to be playing well going in. It didn't happen but we will bounce back (in Seattle)."

Eddie Jones scored on an easy layup and reigning MVP Dirk Nowitzki knocked down two long jumpers to lock things up at 101-101 with 58 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter.

Following a timeout, Roy drove the baseline and found Aldridge, who converted a three-point play to give Portland the lead by three nine seconds later.

"Our thing was that we still felt like we were in control," Aldridge said. "We wanted to make sure that we took our time on the next possessions to get a good shot."

Terry, who struggled with 10 points on 3-of-15 shooting, hit a pair from the line to cut it to 104-103 with 38 seconds to go. But the Blazers pushed the lead back to three with Travis Outlaw's jumper.

After trading free throws, Dallas had one last opportunity to force overtime, but Terry's desperation 3-pointer fell short.

"It was a good enough look, it just fell short," Terry said.

Nowitzki poured in 28 points to lead the way for the Mavs, who trailed by 14 at halftime before battling back to make things interesting in the fourth.

"We had our chances down the stretch but they kept on coming," Nowitzki said. "We tried to get the ball out of Roy's hands some, but Aldridge had a big and-one down the stretch. Travis Outlaw had a big jumper from the baseline. When you can't get that one stop, it's tough to win."

Portland (40-40) made it back to .500 and still has hopes of finishing the season with a winning record for the first time since 2002-03.

"40 wins is great man," Jack said. "It means you are a couple of steps away from being a winning ballclub. We have a winning tradition we are trying to build. For me, it's a total 180 from when I first got here."