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Hill scores 22, lifts Pacers over Suns 97-91

Published on NewsOK Modified: December 28, 2012 at 9:47 pm •  Published: December 28, 2012

"It was just tough trying to close out," he said. "But I think we really made a game of it."

The Suns jumped out to an 8-1 lead to start the game, but George dunked with 7:12 left in the first quarter to give the Pacers a lead they wouldn't give up until the fourth quarter.

"It's becoming a similar theme every night," Suns coach Alvin Gentry said. "We start out great and then we get down and we have to fight all the way back. This is hard to do, especially against a quality team and especially against these guys."

Tyler Hansbrough created a spark in a reserve role for the Pacers and scored 12 points. He scored four points as part of an 8-0 run in the first quarter.

The Pacers later went on a 10-0 run to build their lead up to 16 points. George hit two 3-pointers, and Hill and Lance Stephenson also scored in the run.

Stephenson had 10 points, a career-high nine rebounds, and five assists for the Pacers.

"We played team ball tonight," Stephenson said. "I just tried to get my teammates involved, let the game come to me and played smart."

Indiana led 58-44 at halftime.

The Suns went on a 10-0 run midway through the third quarter to cut the deficit to 68-60. They eventually got within four late in the third when Telfair hit a 3-pointer with 1:44 left in the quarter.

Beasley scored at the start of the fourth to make it 75-73.

NOTES: Suns rookie Luke Zeller, an Indiana native, isn't new to Bankers Life Fieldhouse. He hit a game-winning shot there in as a senior in high school to win the state finals. ... Indianapolis Colts linebacker Robert Mathis, who was selected for the Pro Bowl, was in attendance two days before the Colts will host the Houston Texans in the regular-season finale. ... The Suns need two wins to reach 2,000 in franchise history.