Mason, Hornets beat Rockets, win 3rd straight

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 9, 2013 at 10:56 pm •  Published: January 9, 2013

"It was difficult to get (Lopez) in there with (the Rockets) playing their small bigs," Hornets coach Monty Williams said, adding that he kept his bench players in because of their performance.

The Hornets trailed 69-59 after three quarters but behind Mason's shooting went on a 22-2 run to take an 81-71 lead with 4:14 remaining.

At one point Mason had scored nine points in a 17-2 Hornets run. The Rockets missed their first four shots of the quarter and made one of their first 12.

"They did a good job of blocking the paint and really making it tough on us," Lin said. "We didn't do a good job of finding that open man and making that open pass, me included. I'm the point guard and that starts with me."

The Hornets, who were 1-19 when trailing after three quarters, made 10 of their first 13 shots in the fourth quarter. The Rockets' 10 points were the lowest total New Orleans allowed in a quarter this season.

Gordon and Vasquez sat out for much of the fourth quarter and Davis and Lopez did not play in the final period.

Harden was 1 of 4 in the fourth quarter.

Harden scored 15 points to stake the Rockets to a 36-34 halftime lead.

New Orleans made seven of its first 12 shots to take an early lead but struggled from the field the rest of the half. The Hornets led 16-10 midway through the first quarter when Williams gave Austin Rivers, Davis and Gordon a break.

With New Orleans' scoring trio on the bench, the Rockets closed on a 12-2 run to take a 22-18 lead. Harden, who missed his first two shots, made three of his last five to finish the quarter with nine points.

Notes: The Hornets are 10-11 when holding opponents to less than 100 points. . .New Orleans completed a three-game sweep of Texas teams, winning at Dallas this past Saturday and coming home to knock off San Antonio and Houston. . .The Hornets are on a three-game win streak for the first time since last April.