INDIANAPOLIS – Guard Mo Williams scored 52 points, which is a Bankers Life Fieldhouse record for a visiting player, and the Minnesota Timberwolves snapped a 15-game losing streak Tuesday night with a 110-101 victory against the struggling Indiana Pacers.
Williams scored 37 second-half points, and the Timberwolves (6-31) scored 41 fourth-quarter points to win for the first time since beating Portland on Dec. 10 in Minneapolis. It was the Timberwolves’ first road victory since beating the Los Angeles Lakers on Nov. 28 at the Staples Center.
Williams’ 52 points broke the visitors’ record of 49 scored by Amar’e Stoudemire while playing for Phoenix against the Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Nov. 5, 2008.
The veteran guard had 21 of the Timberwolves’ 41 fourth-quarter points.
Back to back 3-pointers from Williams and forward Robbie Hummel pulled Minnesota to within 81-80 with 8:18 remaining and prompted a timeout by Indiana coach Frank Vogel. At that point, Williams had 37. Minnesota scored 29 points in the final eight minutes to beat Indiana (15-25).
Indiana, beaten 93-92 on Saturday at Philadelphia, struggled again with an opponent fighting to reach double figures in victories. The Pacers lost starting center Roy Hibbert with 5:47 remaining in the third quarter when the big man was assessed a flagrant two foul for pulling center Gorgui Dieng to the floor to stop a layup.
Despite a 16-point third quarter from Minnesota’s Williams, which gave him 31 at that point, Indiana still managed a 75-69 advantage entering the final 12 minutes.
The Pacers used a 31-point second quarter to erase a four-point deficit through 12 minutes and lead 52-46 at halftime. Indiana was 12 of 21 from the field (57.1 percent) in the second period, when 19 of its 31 points were scored by non-starters.
Guard C.J. Watson led the Pacers during the first 24 minutes with 11 points and three assists. Guard Rodney Stuckey had nine first-half points and Hibbert added eight points and six rebounds.
Williams had 15 first-half points for the Timberwolves, and forward Andrew Wiggins added eight.
Indiana out rebounded Minnesota 20-14 through two quarters and was guilty of only six turnovers, two fewer than the Timberwolves. The Pacers were 10 of 13 from the line in the first half, and Minnesota was only 3 of 4.
Indiana’s bench outscored Minnesota’s non-starters 23-7 in the opening-half action.
NOTES: Minnesota was without G Kevin Martin (fractured right wrist), C Nikola Pekovic (sore right ankle) and G Ricky Rubio (sprained left ankle). … Indiana played without G George Hill (left groin strain) and G/F Paul George (fractured right leg). … Indiana G C.J. Miles started in place of G Rodney Stuckey, who is battling food poisoning. … The game was a homecoming for former Purdue University and Valparaiso High School standout F Robbie Hummel, now in his second season with the Timberwolves. … Minnesota reserve G Glenn Robinson III also is an Indiana native and is the son of former Purdue All-American Glenn Robinson. … The Timberwolves got their first victory in Bankers Life Fieldhouse since Feb. 3, 2009. They had lost five in a row at Indiana. … The Pacers entered the game as the NBA’s second-best defensive team, allowing only 96.7 points a game. … Indiana ranks sixth in rebounding at 45.4 a game, while Minnesota ranked 26th at only 41.1. … The Pacers defeated the Timberwolves 100-96 on Dec. 21 in Minneapolis, the only other time the teams play this season.
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