98 - 108 Final - OT
  for this game

Jefferson big in OT as T-Wolves snap home woes

Dec 30, 2008 - 5:17 AM By Tom Coyer PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

MINNEAPOLIS (Ticker) -- Al Jefferson scored a season-high 38 points, including nine in overtime, as the Minnesota Timberwolves snapped their nine-game home skid with a 108-98 victory over the Memphis Grizzlies on Monday night.

"They told me to just take over the game," Jefferson said. "They were doing a lot of fronting me, but I just did what I had to do to get open."

"Whatever we threw at him he worked through it well," Grizzlies forward Darrell Arthur said about defending Jefferson. "He had a great night, he's a great player down low so it's pretty tough to guard him."

The Timberwolves last won at the Target Center when they posted a 102-96 triumph over the Philadelphia 76ers on November 19.

Minnesota rookie forward Kevin Love scored 17 points - just three shy of his career high - and guard Kevin Ollie added 14 and helped seal the game in the extra period by going 6-of-6 from the free-throw line.

Rookie guard O.J. Mayo led Memphis with 23 points, including nine in the fourth quarter - highlighted by the game-tying shot.

After the teams each nailed a pair of free throws to start overtime, Jefferson scored the Timberwolves' next seven points en route to a 98-93 lead with 2:05 left. The bucket was followed by Minnesota's parade to the free-throw line that protected the win.

Mayo's performance came against the team that drafted him. He was part of the draft-day trade that sent Love to Minnesota.

The Timberwolves were able to survive a dreadful second quarter, when they set a franchise record for fewest field goals in a period.

"We had a terrible second quarter and I think the worst in franchise history," Love said. "The fact that we came out and still won the game says a lot."

Wolves coach Kevin McHale was blunt about his team's second quarter.

"We were hideous in that second quarter, just terrible," the coach said. "I guess the guys woke up in the second half."

Sebastian Telfair's jumper with 8:13 left in the quarter was Minnesota's lone field goal as it went 1-of-16 in the period. As a result, Memphis took a 39-32 halftime lead.

Rudy Gay added 19 points and Kyle Lowry recorded his first double-double of the season with 14 and 12 assists for the Grizzlies, who fell to just 2-12 away from home.

Monday's game was the first of a back-to-back set for Minnesota, which now travels to Dallas in search of its first two-game winning streak of the season.

"The things that are working for us we just gotta keep doing it," Jefferson said. "Kevin McHale put us in a great position to win games, and we just gotta do it."