Spurs roll over KingsDec 23, 2008 - 5:05 AM By Brian Guerra PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
SAN ANTONIO (Ticker) -- It was business as usual for the San Antonio Spurs on Monday. Thanks to another stingy defensive effort, the Spurs cruised past the Sacramento Kings for a 101-85 triumph.
Tony Parker collected 18 points and six assists to lead five players in double figures as San Antonio won its second straight following a rare two-game skid. The Kings, meanwhile, continued to struggle as they fell for the 14th time in 16 chances.
The Spurs held the Kings, who fell to 0-4 on their Western Conference road trip, to just 40 percent shooting (31-of-78).
"Sacramento has a lot of people who can score," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. "For us, it was about making stops, not just scoring ourselves. We tried to limit their scoring."
It was the first of a back-to-back for the Spurs, who face Minnesota on Tuesday. Parker, who scored 12 points in the first half, was able to sit out the entire fourth quarter along with fellow All-Star Tim Duncan.
"Hopefully, we can learn some lessons from a team like that," Kings coach Kenny Natt said. "When you're taking jump shots and they're getting layups, it's apparent we need to be more aggressive."
The Spurs were hot early, shooting over 60 percent in the first half.
"I think it was better offense than defense," said Manu Ginobili, who came off the bench to score 10 points. "In the first half, we scored 62. That's a lot of points for us."
In the third quarter, Sacramento trimmed the Spurs' 17-point lead to 11 after a pair of Beno Udrih free throws. But San Antonio rattled off a 12-2 run to extend the lead to 77-56. The Kings never challenged again.
"Our problem was turning the ball over," Kings guard John Salmons said. "We had a spurt of turnovers, and they hit shots and made a run."
The Kings held strong early on, but that only lasted for about nine minutes. The Spurs closed the first quarter with an 8-0 run to take an 11-point lead into the second and continued to pile on from there. Sacramento pulled to as close as six on Bobby Brown's 3-pointer that cut the deficit to 38-32 three minutes into the second, but Tim Duncan's layup on the other end spurred another 8-0 spurt.
"It was just too many turnovers and the ballgame got away from us in the second quarter," Natt said.
The All-Star forward took just five shots - but that was more than enough. His teammates did the rest of the heavy lifting, as the San Antonio bench accounted for 44 of the team's 101 points.
"The bench came up big for us tonight," Spurs center Matt Bonner said.
Salmons led all players with 22 points on 7-of-13 shooting, while Udrih added 13 and six steals. The Kings were once again playing without leading scorer Kevin Martin, who has missed 20 of the last 22 games.
SAN ANTONIO 101 FINAL
Dec 22 10:48 PM
SAN ANTONIO 80 END, 3RD QTR
Dec 22 10:20 PM
SAN ANTONIO 62 HALFTIME
Dec 22 9:38 PM
SAN ANTONIO 33 END, 1ST QTR
Dec 22 9:07 PM
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