Sixers' rally slays BucksApr 3, 2009 - 2:48 AM PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- The Philadelphia 76ers were a bit helter-skelter in the first half against the Milwaukee Bucks, turning the ball over 13 times and hearing groans from the home crowd.
After returning from the locker room, the Sixers played one of their better halves of the season.
Andre Iguodala scored 20 points, Lou Williams had 14 of his 21 in the second half, and Philadelphia rallied from a 13-point first-half deficit to defeat Milwaukee 105-95 on Thursday night.
Andre Miller contributed 18 points and 11 assists for the Sixers (39-35), who won their second straight and vaulted past Miami into fifth place in the Eastern Conference playoff race.
Marreese Speights had 14 points, Reggie Evans chipped in 13 and Samuel Dalembert added 10 rebounds for Philadelphia, which won its fifth in a row against the Bucks, including all three this season.
"Everybody was not there mentally," Evans said about the first half. "The second half was almost like a wake-up call, 'Let's tighten up a little bit. Let's focus in even more and get into it.' We slowly grinded it out."
With only eight games remaining before the playoffs, every victory is crucial for the Sixers. The first half was hardly a playoff-caliber effort.
"Fourth quarters have been big and that's really important," Philadelphia coach Tony DiLeo said. "Down the stretch, we played with a sense of urgency."
Ramon Sessions led Milwaukee with his second straight stellar outing, getting 18 points, 10 assists and five rebounds a night after his first career triple-double against the Los Angeles Lakers.
"I'm confident and I'm trying to finish every game strong," Sessions said. "I made a few mistakes in the fourth quarter which I need to correct. We continued to play hard until the end and I'll always give that kind of effort."
Richard Jefferson added 17 points and Charlie Bell contributed 14 for the Bucks (32-45), who have lost seven of eight.
"It was very similar to (Wednesday against the Lakers) where we had a lot of breakdowns early in the game," Milwaukee coach Scott Skiles said. "The Sixers didn't take advantage of them until later. With about three minutes left in the third, they started getting into the paint and causing us problems."
The game was tied at 89 with 5:45 remaining before the Sixers proceeded on a 10-0 run in the next 2:16. Speights had four points during the spurt, putting a stamp on his second straight solid game off the bench. The rookie from Florida had 16 points in Tuesdays win over Atlanta.
Despite falling behind early, Evans gave the Sixers a boost in his first start of the season. It was only his sixth game scoring in double figures.
"Just being aggressive, that's all," Evans said. "And I'm just trying to contribute and do whatever it takes to get wins."
Milwaukee led 52-39 on a long 3-pointer by Villanueva with 2:01 left in the first half.
The Bucks held a 59-50 advantage at halftime thanks largely to 56-percent shooting and 13 turnovers by the Sixers, including an uncharacteristic five by Miller.
Miller finished with a season-high eight turnovers, two shy of his career-high 10 set on Jan. 17, 2005 as a member of the Denver Nuggets at Golden State.
Notes: Philadelphia F Thaddeus Young walked into the locker room before the game on crutches. He was injured in Tuesdays win over Atlanta and will be out two-to-three weeks with a sprained right ankle and bone bruise. The playoffs begin on April 18. "I should be back for the playoffs," Young said. .. The Bucks are the only team in the NBA to have at least one player or coach representing all Final Four teams North Carolina (assistant coach Joe Wolf); Michigan State (G Charlie Bell and coach Scott Skiles); Connecticut (F Charlie Villanueva); and Villanova (F Malik Allen). ... Milwaukee F Francisco Elson (right hip flexor strain) didn't make the trip.
PHILADELPHIA 105 FINAL
Apr 2 9:36 PM
PHILADELPHIA 80 END, 3RD QTR
Apr 2 9:03 PM
PHILADELPHIA 50 HALFTIME
Apr 2 8:12 PM
PHILADELPHIA 24 END, 1ST QTR
Apr 2 7:38 PM
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