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Paul, Rockets rout Spurs 124-109 for 12th straight victory

Paul, Rockets rout Spurs 124-109 for 12th straight victory

Chris Paul had 28 points, eight assists and seven steals to lead the Houston Rockets to their 12th straight victory, a 124-109 win over the San Antonio Spurs on Friday night.Paul became the first player in NBA history to post 28 points, eight assists and seven steals in a game against the Spurs. In the past 10 years, that stat line has been achieved just 10 times — Paul has done it six of those times. The Rockets are unbeaten when he plays this season.Paul's dazzling performance came on a night James Harden had one of his worst 3-point shooting nights of the season, making 6 of 18 from the field, including 2 of 11 from 3. Harden had 28 points, seven rebounds and six assists, scoring half his points on 14-of-16 shooting from the free-throw line.The Rockets are on the fourth-longest win streak in franchise history and the longest since a franchise-best 22 straight in the 2007-08 season.All Rockets starters and reserve Eric Gordon had scored in double figures by the end of the third quarter. Clint Capela had 18 points and 10 rebounds, Gordon scored 14 points, Ryan Anderson had 12, and Trevor Ariza added 11.The Rockets beat the Spurs for just the third time in their last 12 meetings.LaMarcus Aldridge led the Spurs with 16 points. Joffrey Lauvergne had 14, Patty Mills had 13 and Davis Bertans scored 12, all off the bench for San Antonio.The Rockets jumped to a 31-16 lead at the end of the first quarter and led 60-43 at the half. The Rockets entered the fourth quarter with a 92-72 lead.Kawhi Leonard played in his second game back after making his season debut on Tuesday night in Dallas after missing the first 27 games of the season with a right quadriceps injury. Leonard, who has been recovering from a quadriceps condition that causes pain and weakness in the knee, started and had 12 points in 17 minutes, all in the first half.Before the game, Spurs coach Gregg Popovich hinted before the game that Leonard and Tony Parker were unlikely to play Saturday night in Dallas in the second half of San Antonio's back-to-back.TIP-INSSpurs: SF Kyle Anderson missed his sixth straight game with a sprained left MCL, but he is progressing well and could return after San Antonio's back-to-back in Houston and Dallas, possibly as early as Monday when the Spurs host the Clippers. ... Danny Green started and played through left groin tightness, scoring two points in 19 minutes.Rockets: Houston played its first game without Luc Mbah a Moute, who suffered a dislocated right shoulder on Wednesday night against Charlotte. Mbah a Moute could be out 2-3 weeks with the injury. ... The Rockets improved to 19-1 when leading after the third quarter, winning by double digits for the 17th time in 27 games.UP NEXTSpurs: Host Dallas on Saturday night.Rockets: Host Milwaukee on Saturday night.___For more NBA coverage: https://apnews.com/tag/NBAbasketball

Westbrook triple-double keys OKC in 3OT thriller vs 76ers

Westbrook triple-double keys OKC in 3OT thriller vs 76ers

Russell Westbrook said goodbye to a three-overtime thriller and trolled Joel Embiid with a smile and a wave.'I was telling him, 'Go home,'' Westbrook said.Embiid irked Westbrook earlier in the game when the 76ers' social media star waved goodbye toward the crowd once Oklahoma City center Steven Adams fouled out. Westbrook got the last laugh, and capped his triple-double, 52-minute effort with the final assist of the game, and the Thunder pulled out a 119-117 victory on Friday night.The early contender for NBA game of the year was led by perhaps the game of Embiid's career. Embiid scored 34 points in 49 minutes with an achy back, saved the game in the first overtime with a block on Westbrook and trash talked Carmelo Anthony.He waved his arms and exhorted the crowd to get louder with each chant of 'Trust the Process!'I'm not about to get in a back-and-forth with him,' Westbrook said. 'I'm not about to give him my energy.'Westbrook had an off night from the floor (10 of 33; missed a driving dunk at the end of regulation), yet finished with 27 points, 17 rebounds and 15 assists. He even saved Andre Roberson from goat status in the third OT. Roberson failed to even look at the basket and then missed a layup in a stunning sequence to close the second OT, then earned redemption when Westbrook fed him for the winner with 10 seconds left in the game.'Just trusting it,' Westbrook said.It's a twist on the Sixers catchphrase popularized during Embiid's absence over his first two seasons with injuries.Embiid, Philly's franchise center, grabbed his lower back when he took a hard foul on a drive to the basket in the fourth quarter. Embiid grimaced during timeouts on the bench and trudged into position a few times.Embiid, who said he just needed treatment, brushed off Westbrook's wave and took a shot at the Thunder guard's stats.'They did a lot of things. But, I mean, the dude shot 10 for 33. I wish I would had shot 33 times. I guess we would have had a better chance of actually winning the game,' Embiid said 'But he told me to go home. This is my home. I ain't going nowhere.'Embiid sucked it up and carried the Sixers in the fourth and the first overtime. His feed to a charging Ben Simmons on the baseline for a two-handed dunk tied the score at 94-all with 53 seconds left in the quarter. The Sixers closed the fourth on an 11-0 run.Embiid scored the first bucket of OT and the Sixers led for the first time in the game. The Sixers' five-point lead with 1:20 left in overtime was wiped out on Paul George's 3-pointer and a Westbrook bucket that made it 102-all. The Sixers blew their final possession on an ill-conceived 3 for Dario Saric.Round 2 was just as fun.Westbrook and Robert Covington exchanged 3s and George tied it at 109 on a driving layup. Westbrook and Embiid swapped buckets that kept it even and the Sixers had one more chance to win it Embiid lost the ball late in the second OT.Embiid and Westbrook combined to score eight straight points in the third overtime, and Embiid waved see-ya later when Adams fouled out of the game.But Embiid seemed gassed at the end and there's no telling how the heavy workload may affect his availability the rest of the week.The Sixers were featured on ESPN on Friday as part of Philadelphia All Access, and Sixers' related content was aired throughout the day on all platforms.'I'm not a fan,' coach Brett Brown said. 'I like living behind closed doors.'But Brown understood the exposure would help build the brand and serve as a recruiting pitch of sorts to any free agents intrigued about becoming part of The Process. The Sixers put on a show in the fourth until Embiid gave them a scare.Embiid's health woes have dogged him since his college career at Kansas and every slip, ache or bump throws Sixers fans into a panic. Embiid has been banged-up lately but he calmly went to the line after he smacked the court and made both free throws. He fell again when he tripped over Adams, who earned a foul, and sank two more free throws to make it 78-72.TIP-INSThunder: Roberson had missed two games with a sprained left ankle. ... Coach Billy Donovan was drilled in the face on an errant no-look pass — as in, Donovan wasn't looking — by Sixers forward Richaun Holmes.76ers: F Robert Covington shot three airballs in the first half.MELO BACKCarmelo Anthony warmed-up for his New York homecoming with 24 points. Anthony cracked the 20-point mark for only the second time in his last 10 games and perhaps gave Knicks fans a glimpse of what's ahead when he returns to Madison Square Garden on Saturday. Anthony had struggled headed into Friday's game, averaging just 17.7 points on 40 percent shooting. He made 11 of 17 shots.'I became entrenched into not just the Knicks but the city as a whole,' Anthony said. 'Those are my roots. The people there, I became one of them. I've embraced New York City, I've embraced the culture.'50 MINUTE MENAdams, Westbrook, JJ Redick and Simmons all played 50-plus minutes.UP NEXTThunder: It's Melo vs. the Knicks at MSG on Saturday.76ers: Play Monday at Chicago.___For more NBA coverage: https://apnedws.com/tag/NBAbasketball

Mount Union beats Mary Hardin-Baylor 12-0 for D-III title

Mount Union beats Mary Hardin-Baylor 12-0 for D-III title

Justin Hill and D'Angelo Fulford have provided an offensive spark for Mount Union all season, so when the Purple Raiders were locked in a defensive struggle against Mary Hardin-Baylor in the Division III national championship, it was no surprise the pair did it again.Fulford hit Hill for a 42-yard touchdown pass early in the fourth quarter Friday night, pushing Mount Union's lead to 10-0, and the Purple Raiders won their 13th football national championship with a 12-0 victory over the defending champions Friday night.'We just had to make a play,' said Hill, who, like Fulford, is only a sophomore. 'D-12 threw the ball up and I had to make a play. I'm an impact player so I had to make a play when we needed it.'The touchdown pass, which barely cleared the hands of defensive backs Reginald Cole and Jefferson Fritz, was the 50th scoring throw for Fulford this season, and the 20th that went to Hill. It came with 11:17 remaining, and gave the Mount Union defense a sense of security.'We felt that we could hold them under 10 points at least for the last 10 minutes of the game,' cornerback Louis Berry said.The Purple Raiders (15-0), who lost to Mary Hardin-Baylor in the semifinals last season, held the Crusaders to 144 yards.'Everything we did they were ready for it,' running back Markeith Miller said. 'They had a great game plan.'Mount Union also finished with eight sacks for 48 yards, including a safety by Nick Brish, and two interceptions.The Crusaders (14-1) had not trailed all season and had their 29-game winning streak snapped. They also were shut out for just the second time in the 20-year history of their program. The only other was a 28-0 loss to Mississippi College on Oct. 17, 1998, the first season Mary Hardin-Baylor fielded a team.Coach Pete Fredenburg was left to lament missed opportunities. The Crusaders ran a punt back for a touchdown in the first half, but it was nullified by a running into the kicker flag, and then tried a fake punt that came up short, leading to Mount Union's first-half field goal.'There were a multitude of things that we could have done better to keep them off the scoreboard,' he said.The Purple Raiders took a 3-0 lead on Alex Louthan's 31-yard field goal 1:15 before halftime. The drive was set up by Gabe Brown's interception of Carl Robinson III at the Crusaders 47 yard-line. Brown's interception came one play after Mount Union's Fulford was intercepted by Jefferson Fritz near the goal line. It was just the fourth time all season that Fulford had been intercepted.Fritz picked off Fulford again in the third quarter, giving the Crusaders the ball at their own 31, but four plays later, Berry made a diving interception to get the ball back for Mount Union. They drove to the Crusaders 25, but Jawanza Evans-Morris was stopped for no gain on a fourth-and-1.The shutout was the first in the Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl since West Georgia beat Augustana 14-0 in 1982.

There is a lot of in-game action every week, and we’re airing it right here. To find out when your team’s game is being aired, click the link above.
There is a lot of in-game action every week, and we’re airing it right here. To find out when your team’s game is being aired, click the link above.
There is a lot of in-game action every week, and we’re airing it right here. To find out when your team’s game is being aired, click the link above.
There is a lot of in-game action every week, and we’re airing it right here. To find out when your team’s game is being aired, click the link above.
Panthers owner facing misconduct allegations Panthers owner and founder Jerry Richardson is the subject of a workplace misconduct investigation, the team announced Friday.