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Spurs grab 2-0 lead in win over Lakers
San Antonio, TX (Sports Network) - Tony Parker scored 24 of his 28 points in the second half to lead the San Antonio Spurs past the Los Angeles Lakers, 102-91, in Game 2 of their Western Conference quarterfinal series.
For the second straight game the Spurs pulled away behind a balanced attack and are headed to Los Angeles for Game 3 on Friday with a 2-0 series lead.
"All we did was keep serve. We have to go out (to Los Angeles) and see if we can play better than we did at home," Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich said.
Kawhi Leonard and Tim Duncan each chipped in 16 points while Manu Ginobili scored 13 in 19 minutes for the Spurs, who shot 51 percent from the field.
Steve Blake and Dwight Howard netted 16 apiece for the Lakers, but Blake left in the second half with a right hamstring strain. Metta World Peace and Pau Gasol each donated 13 points in the loss.
The injured Kobe Bryant tweeted during Game 1 his desire for the Lakers to work the ball inside to the imposing duo of Howard and Gasol. The team didn't heed the advice, scoring just as many points (40) in the paint as it did in Sunday's setback.
A 13-3 run spanning the first and second quarters gave the Spurs the biggest lead of the opening half, 31-23, and the hosts again went up by eight courtesy of a half-ending 10-2 surge.
The Lakers pushed ahead briefly, 44-43, on Howard's three-point play with under three minutes remaining in the second quarter, but Ginobili helped San Antonio head to the locker room in style with two assists and a pair of 3- pointers in the final two minutes for a 56-48 cushion at the break.
"We couldn't close it out in the first and second quarter," Lakers head coach Mike D'Antoni said.
Parker, still working his way back from a left ankle sprain and sore neck, shot 1-for-6 in the first half before finding his rhythm in the third to keep the Lakers at bay. His 15 points in the frame, coupled with Gary Neal's late jumper from the top of the key, had the Spurs holding a 78-68 advantage heading to the fourth.
The outcome was never in doubt in the fourth. A Howard putback slam had Los Angeles within 93-84 with under three minutes left, but Parker scored the next seven points, the last three coming when he rattled one in from the corner off a behind-the-back pass from Ginobili.
When falling behind 2-0 in a best-of-seven playoff series, the Lakers are 2-18 all-time, though one of those wins came against the Spurs in the 2004 West semifinals ... Teams with a 2-0 lead in a best-of-seven NBA playoff series have gone on to win the series 94 percent of the time (233-of-248) .. The Lakers connected on 45 percent of their shots ... Howard also had nine rebounds and four blocks ... Parker and Ginobili each recorded seven assists.
04/25 00:41:00 ET