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Irving, Cavs rally past Bobcats

Jan 16, 2012 - 11:06 PM Charlotte, NC (Sports Network) - Rookie Kyrie Irving had 25 points, seven assists and four rebounds, helping the Cleveland Cavaliers rally past the Charlotte Bobcats, 102-94.

Antawn Jamison added 20 points, seven boards and five assists for the Cavaliers, who trailed by 14 in the third quarter.

Anderson Varejao and Omri Casspi each added 14 points for Cleveland, which went 3-4 on a seven-game road trip. Varejao also pulled down 12 rebounds.

D.J. Augustin ended with 24 points and eight assists for the Bobcats, who fell to 3-11 on the season. Gerald Henderson and D.J. White donated 17 and 15 points, respectively.

"That first quarter we came out with tons of energy; we're pushing the ball and driving it and making the right passes and we knocked down shots too," Henderson said. "Energy is going to be the key for us, so we need to keep that up."

Byron Mullens' three-pointer and a Kemba Walker layup gave Charlotte a 65-51 lead with 9:23 left in the third quarter.

But the Cavaliers responded with a 16-6 run to pull within four. Casspi tallied seven points during the burst, including a free throw with 4:11 remaining to make it 71-67.

Down by five, 77-72, with 1 1/2 minutes to go, the Cavaliers scored the final seven points of the period to take a 79-77 lead into the fourth.

Irving's free throw and three-pointer bookended a brief 6-0 spurt early in the fourth, giving Cleveland an 87-79 edge with 7:47 to play.

The visitors almost fell apart down the stretch, allowing the Bobcats to go on an 8-0 run. White had six points during the surge, including a jumper to give the home team a 92-91 lead with 2:54 left.

After trading baskets, Varejao made a layup with two minutes remaining to give Cleveland a 95-94 edge.

A shot clock violation on the Bobcats gave the Cavaliers the ball back. However, Irving missed a six-foot jumper.

With a chance to put his team in front, Walker turned the ball over on a bad pass. Jamison found Varejao open in the lane at the other end for a layup and 97-94 Cleveland lead with 54.1 seconds to play.

Mullens' missed three-pointer led to Irving's layup at the other end. The Cavaliers went 3-for-4 from the foul line in the final seconds to seal the win.

"I said if we're going to win this game guys we're going to have to guard. If we guard, we'll win the game," Cleveland head coach Byron Scott said. "We'll have an opportunity to score, but we have to do a better job of defending. In the second half they only got 37 points. We did a great job in the second half of defending."

The Bobcats, who trailed 30-23 after 12 minutes, used a big second quarter to take the lead. Down by three, 38-35, midway through the second, Charlotte went on a 16-2 run. Augustin had 11 points during the surge, including two free throws with 2:20 left to make it 51-40.

The home team took a 57-46 lead into the locker room.

Game Notes

The Cavs won their third straight game over the Bobcats while snapping a four- game skid at Charlotte...Mullens had nine points and 12 rebounds...The Cavaliers went 20-for-29 from the foul line.