Final / OT

Regular Season Series (Game 1 of 2)

Series starts 12/23

Game 1: Monday, December 23rd
Game 2: Sunday, March 30th

Hornets 94

(18-11, 7-10 away)

Spurs 99


    Coverage: FSSW

    7:30 PM ET, December 23, 2002

    AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX

    1 2 3 4 OT T
    NO 23 22 30 15 494
    SA 31 22 22 15 999

    Top Performers

    NO: B. Davis 18 Pts, 8 Reb, 8 Ast, 1 Stl

    SA: T. Duncan 29 Pts, 23 Reb, 4 Ast, 5 Blk

    Duncan ties career high for rebounds (23), scores 29

    SAN ANTONIO (AP) -- It took a predictably strong performance from Tim Duncan, and an unusually good effort from Bruce Bowen, for the San Antonio Spurs extend their winning streak to four games.

    Duncan had 29 points and tied a career high with 23 rebounds, while Bruce Bowen tied his career best with 21 points as the Spurs beat the New Orleans Hornets 99-94 in overtime Monday night.

    "It was a fantastic game for us,'' Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. "You had two fantastic basketball teams who went after each other. I'm happy to be on the good end tonight.''

    San Antonio went ahead 98-94 in the overtime on Bowen's 3-pointer with 2:37 to play. The Hornets shot just 2-of-11 in the extra period and didn't score over the final 3:15.

    David Wesley scored 20 points, Baron Davis had 18 and Jamal Mashburn 16 for the Hornets, who have lost four of five. New Orleans is 11-1 at home and 7-10 on the road, but it finished a season-high seven-game road trip 4-3.

    "I think that we did a really great job of just keeping in the game, and the character of my team is incredible,'' Hornets coach Paul Silas said. "The character of this group -- especially to hang in this ballgame, with this type of road trip we had, says a lot.''

    Duncan had 23 rebounds twice before, the last time against Portland on March 19, 2001.

    "This was a great win,'' said Duncan, who had 22 defensive rebounds. "In the second and third quarter we kind of let them back into the game, but we kept our composure, we kept rebounding and scoring.

    "We're on a roll, and we really need this right now. But we can be an even better team than we are right now.''

    Bowen, a career 5.4 scorer, shot 9-of-13 from the floor.

    "I know my role, I know what I'm supposed to do, I'm a defensive guy,'' Bowen said. "I had some wide open shots and they fell. Once I had that confidence, they just fell.''

    After New Orleans grabbed a 77-75 lead on Davis' jump shot to open the fourth quarter, the Spurs answered with a 9-1 run. Davis scored five straight points and tied it at 86 on two free throws with 3:23 remaining.

    Both teams missed several opportunities down the stretch before David Robinson made two free throws to give San Antonio an 88-86 lead with 46.3 seconds left. Mashburn, who was only 7-of-23 from the floor, tied it again on a 15-foot jumper with 32.4 seconds left.

    "We've been playing much better these last four,'' said Robinson, who added 10 points. "Now we're really starting to believe in what we're doing and continue to get better. Consistency is what characterizes this team. That is Spurs basketball at its best.''

    Duncan's one-handed dunk put the Spurs back in front before Mashburn answered again with a jumper to tie it at 90 with 13.7 seconds left. Duncan missed a running 10-foot jumper at the buzzer to force overtime.

    After trailing by as many as 16 points in the second quarter, New Orleans rallied in the third behind Wesley to take a 74-73 lead.

    With Wesley scoring 13 points in the period, the Hornets outscored San Antonio 30-22 in the period. The score was tied at 75 entering the fourth.

    Game notes
    San Antonio outscored New Orleans 52-18 in the paint. ... The Spurs are now 13-3 at home in the new SBC Center. ... San Antonio is 5-0 against teams from the Eastern Conference ... The Spurs came into the game leading the league in blocked shots (195) and added 10 against New Orleans. ... Duncan's double-double was his 20th of the season and 307th of his career. ... Hornets center Elden Campbell sat out the game with a sore right knee.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 94 99
    FGM-FGA 35-94 (.372) 38-80 (.475)
    3PM-3PA 4-13 (.308) 3-12 (.250)
    FTM-FTA 20-30 (.667) 20-29 (.690)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 13-43 8-49
    Assists 18 12
    Turnovers 12 17
    Steals 12 6
    Blocks 6 10
    Fast Break Points 5 3
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 28 (0/0) 28 (0/0)

    Top Performers

    New Orleans
    San Antonio
    Baron Davis Davis
    Points: 18
    Reb: 8
    Ast: 8
    Stl: 1
    Blk: 0
    Tim Duncan Duncan
    Points: 29
    Reb: 23
    Ast: 4
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 5