NBA Game Summary - Utah at Houston
(Sunday, February 27th)
Final Score: Utah 99, Houston 92
Houston, TX (Sports Network) - Matt Harpring scored a season-high 28 points on 12-of-17 shooting to lead the Utah Jazz to a 99-92 win over the Houston Rockets at the Toyota Center.
Raja Bell, who went 3-for-3 from three-point range, netted 21 points for the Jazz, who snapped a five-game road losing streak and won for just the second time in their last eight contests overall. Utah was without Carlos Boozer, who missed his fourth straight game with a sprained right foot.
Tracy McGrady scored 23 points and recently acquired Mike James added 21 for the Rockets, who have dropped three in a row since a season-high eight-game win streak.
The game was tied at 42 apiece at halftime, but Utah took a 48-44 lead on Harpring's two free throws a little more than two minutes into the third quarter.
Houston trailed by two before scoring seven straight points, as a three- pointer by James gave the Rockets a 57-52 lead with 6:27 left in the period.
But the Jazz responded with a 7-0 run of their own and went up 59-57 on a three-pointer by Bell with 4:54 remaining in the third.
The teams went into the fourth quarter tied at 69-69, but Utah opened up a six-point lead at 82-76 on a difficult, reverse layup by Andrei Kirilenko with 6:43 left to play.
"In the fourth quarter, we were so confident with our effort," said Kirilenko. "We had confidence and we didn't let Houston come back."
A tip-in by Bell with 4:45 remaining gave the Jazz their largest lead of the game at 88-78. The Rockets could only get as close as seven the rest of the way.
"We got on a roll on offense in the fourth quarter," said Harpring. "We had the right plays and we executed."
Mehmet Okur came off the bench to score 14 points while Kirilenko finished with 13 for Utah, which shot 48 percent (40-of-84) from the floor and went 4- of-9 from three-point range.
Yao Ming and David Wesley each netted 12 points and Juwan Howard chipped in with 11 points and nine rebounds for Houston, which made 50 percent (32-of-64) of its attempts from the field. The Rockets were 5-of-20 from beyond the arc.
Houston led 25-23 after one quarter of play and held a 10-point advantage in the first half. However, Utah outscored the Rockets 19-17 in the second quarter to tie the game at 42-42 at the half.
McGrady led all scorers with 16 first-half points for Houston, which shot 39 percent (14-of-36) from the floor over the first 24 minutes of the contest.
Harpring scored 10 points in the first half for the Jazz, who connected on 45 percent (17-of-38) of their field goal attempts.
The teams combined to go 0-for-15 from three-point range in the first half, with Houston missing on all of its 11 attempts from beyond the arc.
James was making his debut with Houston since being acquired in a deadline trade with Milwaukee on Thursday...Moochie Norris, who was traded by New York to the Rockets on Thursday, also played with his new team for the first time. He scored two points on 1-of-4 shooting in nine minutes of action...Houston's Dikembe Mutombo was called for a technical foul in the second quarter.
02/27 21:03:32 ET