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George leads balanced Pacers past Suns, 112-104

Published on NewsOK Modified: March 31, 2013 at 12:37 am •  Published: March 31, 2013
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PHOENIX (AP) — Indiana's longest free throw parade of the season took the Pacers to their fourth straight win.

Paul George scored 25 points to lead all five Indiana starters in double figures and the Pacers beat the Phoenix Suns 112-104 on Saturday night.

Roy Hibbert scored 20, Lance Stephenson 16, George Hill 15 and David West 14 for the Pacers.

Indiana's seventh victory in eight games lifted them a half-game ahead of idle New York for second in the Eastern Conference.

Goran Dragic, who sat out the previous two games for a rest, had 21 points and nine assists for the Suns before fouling out with 1:10 to play.

Indiana made 34 of 46 free throws, its season high in makes and attempts. They also were opponent highs for the Suns.

Going to the free throw line, coach Pacers coach Frank Vogel said, "is part of our style of play."

"We try to pound it inside and force teams to foul us if they don't have great low post defenders, and then we pound the glass," Vogel said. "A lot of fouls came on that as well, but we have ones, twos and threes that are good attackers as well."

Hibbert, who scored 16 in the first half, said each of the starters took a turn playing an important role in the victory.

" We are a team that is filled with leaders," he said. "Paul took over in moments, David came in and closed the game out, George made some spectacular plays and Lance is our bulldog."

The Suns, losers of six in a row, were outscored 10-3 over the final three minutes after cutting the lead to 102-101.

"Sometimes you just gotta win," Vogel said. "It's not always going to be a 25-point road win. Any win on the road is a good win."

Markieff Morris added 18 for the Suns, who had seven in double figures.

"Like I have said before, there are no moral victories, but when you are traveling down the road we are traveling you have to get small victories out of tough times," Phoenix interim coach Lindsey Hunter said. "I think tonight we got a lot of small victories. That is a championship-caliber team over there I would say and I think we fought them toe to toe right up until the end."

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