Nets
Hornets
114 - 103 Final - OT
  for this game

Nets finish strong, defeat Bobcats in overtime

Dec 28, 2008 - 4:15 AM By Derek Smith PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (Ticker) -- Vince Carter scored 23 of his 28 points after halftime as the New Jersey Nets downed the Charlotte Bobcats, 114-103, in overtime on Saturday.

The win gave New Jersey a split of the home-and-home series after Charlotte downed the Nets, 95-87, on Friday. The triumph also pulled the Nets (15-15) back to .500 on the season.

"Tonight was a good win," New Jersey coach Lawrence Frank said. "Our guys showed a great deal of grit and mental toughness. We really fought back."

New Jersey opened overtime with back-to-back baskets from Josh Boone and Keyon Dooling and never looked back.

"They were phenomenal," Carter said. "We have confidence in our bench. They are capable of playing big minutes and doing things in crunch time."

Charlotte got as close as 101-99 on Emeka Okafor's basket before the Nets went on an 11-1 run to put the game out of reach.

"We started off well in overtime," Nets guard Devin Harris said. "Guys ran pick-and-rolls and got good looks at the basket and knocked them down. Our execution was a lot better than it was the last few days. This team is learning from our mistakes."

Raymond Felton had tied the game at 96-96 on a three-point play with 27 seconds to play in regulation, which also fouled out New Jersey rookie Brook Lopez.

"It was a hard-fought game," Felton said. "It was a game until the end."

The Nets had two shots on the final possession of regulation, but Harris and Carter both missed their respective long jumpers.

New Jersey got 26 points from Harris, while Jarvis Hayes added 14 off the bench.

"It was nice getting the win after the loss we suffered the night before," Hayes said. "We did a better job of getting stops at the end of the game."

The Nets led by six entering the fourth quarter and Trenton Hassell matched New Jersey's largest lead with a 3-pointer early in the period for a 77-69 lead.

Charlotte fought back and took the lead for the first time since the third quarter after a Gerald Wallace three-point play ended a 7-0 run - giving the Bobcats an 87-85 lead with 5:11 remaining in regulation.

Carter answered right back with a 3-pointer for another New Jersey lead.

The contest remained close and Gerald Wallace tied the score at 93-93 on a pair of free throws with 2:09 left. New Jersey took the lead back with a trio of free throws in the final 46 seconds.

"We were playing uphill and they made shots," Charlotte coach Larry Brown said. "They have a lot of guys that create double-teams and they went small."

Charlotte guard Raja Bell left the game in the third quarter with a groin strain and did not return. He left the game with what was then a team-high 18 points on 7-of-10 shooting.

The Bobcats were paced by Wallace's 32 points while Okafor added 16 and 10 rebounds.

"We played hard," Wallace said. "We played aggressive and we did everything we could do to put ourselves in a position to win the game. But the other team gets all the breaks and things seem to always go their way."






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