Thursday, January 15, 2009
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Spurs beat Lakers 112-111 in West finals rematch

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[January 15, 2009]  SAN ANTONIO (AP) -- Roger Mason hit a jumper with 10 seconds left and made a free throw after being fouled by Derek Fisher, and the San Antonio Spurs beat the Los Angeles Lakers 112-111 on Wednesday night in the first meeting between the teams since the Western Conference finals.

After Mason's three-point play, the Lakers failed to get a shot off when Trevor Ariza was called for traveling with .8 left.

HardwareThe Lakers rallied from 11 points behind in the fourth quarter and led when Kobe Bryant hit a 3-pointer with 12 seconds left.

The Spurs called timeout and worked the ball over the Mason in the corner, where he was bumped from behind by Fisher while shooting from about 16 feet.

It was Fisher who was not called for a foul when Brent Barry tried to get off a last-second shot for the Spurs last year in the conference-finals series.

"I saw him try to reach for the ball," Mason said. "I wanted to get a little contact and then get the shot off. When I fell down, I looked up and saw it go in.

"I just didn't want to ruin it (by missing the free throw). I knew we needed that point."

Mason, signed by the Spurs as a free agent after playing in Washington, also hit a last-second 3-pointer to beat Phoenix on the road on Christmas Day.


Manu Ginobili led San Antonio with 27 points, and Bryant had 29 for Los Angeles. The Lakers lost for only the second time in their last 12 games.

The Lakers won the playoff series last year in five games losing the NBA finals to Boston. The Lakers and Spurs will play twice more this season.

Ginobili, the Sixth Man of the Year last season, was 9-of-15 from the field in his usual role off the bench for the Spurs, 10-2 in their last 12 and 25-12 overall.

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The Spurs led 102-91 early in the fourth quarter on Tony Parker's layup. But the Lakers scored nine straight points to cut it to 102-100 with 4:45 left.

Notes: Robert Horry, who won NBA titles while playing for both the Lakers and Spurs, attended the game. ... Bryant wore a small bandage along his right eye to protect the stitches put in after he was cut during a head-to-head collision with Miami's Dwyane Wade on Sunday. ... Lakers G Sasha Vujacic sat out his second straight game because of back spasms.

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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