Bucks losing sight of final playoff spotRoy Hibbert had 23 points and 14 rebounds, including six free throws in the final 74 seconds, to lead the Indiana Pacers to a 105-99 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday night.
MILWAUKEE — Roy Hibbert had 23 points and 14 rebounds, including six free throws in the final 74 seconds, to lead the Indiana Pacers to a 105-99 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Saturday night.
Danny Granger scored 21 points and George Hill added 13 points for Indiana, which has won four straight.
Monta Ellis had 20 points and Brandon Jennings added 16 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds for Milwaukee. The Bucks lost for the third time in four games to fall 2 1/2 games behind New York and Philadelphia for one of the last two playoff spots in the Eastern Conference.
Neither team could make baskets in the final minutes, with Indiana missing its last nine shots and Milwaukee five straight before Ellis hit a 3-pointer with 11 seconds left to pull the Bucks to 103-99 with 11 seconds left.
Hibbert then made two free throws for the final margin, and Ellis missed a 3 with 5 seconds left.
With Indiana leading 99-93, Mike Dunleavy hit a 3 for the Bucks with 4:02 to go.
That’s when lids seemed to go on both baskets. Neither team could score until Hibbert’s two free throws with 1:14 left, giving the Pacers a 101-96 lead.
Milwaukee’s Larry Sanders then missed two free throws, and Hibbert made two more for Indiana.
Ellis then hit his 3 and Hibbert made two more from the line to close the scoring.
With the Bucks trailing 82-80 early in the fourth quarter, Dunleavy missed a 26-foot 3-point attempt. Leandro Barbosa then made an open 3 for the Pacers for an 85-80 lead.
Dunleavy missed two free throws and Barbosa hit another 3 to give Indiana an eight-point lead with 9:39 to go.
Before the game, Milwaukee coach Scott Skiles said his team would have little chance of winning unless it outrebounded the Pacers. Indiana was 29-5 when outrebounding its opponents coming in.
“You only have about a 13 percent chance of winning if you don’t out-rebound them,” Skiles said. “So, it’s a pretty simple game for us. We better not only get stops, but we better get on the glass. That will be a huge factor.”
The bigger Pacers, though, had no trouble dominating the boards against Milwaukee, holding a 54-43 advantage in the game. Indiana had 17 second-chance points to Milwaukee’s nine.
Indiana is third in the East and can play spoiler, still playing the Bucks another time, and Philadelphia twice in its final six games.
Milwaukee scored the final seven points of the third quarter and pulled to 80-78 on Dunleavy’s 3 with 45 seconds left in the quarter. Ellis missed a jumper in the lane with 2 seconds to go that would have tied it heading into the fourth.
The Pacers used a 20-9 run to end the second quarter and led 59-48 at halftime.
Indiana made 12 of its first 14 shots, but missed its next five. The cold streak allowed Milwaukee to tie it 27-27 at the end of the first quarter.