James scores 42 as Lakers rally past Spurs

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LeBron James’ Lakers came from behind to beat the visiting San Antonio Spurs. Xinhua

LOS ANGLELES (Reuters) – LeBron James scored 42 points, including 14 straight points for Los Angeles in a pivotal stretch of the fourth quarter, and the Lakers came from behind to beat the visiting San Antonio Spurs 121-113 on Wednesday.

The game went back and forth through the fourth quarter and was tied at 104 before Lonzo Ball poured in a 3-pointer to give Los Angeles a 107-104 lead with 2:36 to play. Kyle Kuzma added a layup after a steal and a pass from James to push the advantage to five points before a Patty Mills 3-pointer brought the Spurs back within 109-107.

With the Lakers up 112-109, James added a 3-pointer and a layup on Los Angeles’ next two possessions, then a free throw with 20.8 seconds to play to close out the scoring and the victory for the Lakers.

Kuzma added 22 points for Los Angeles. Ball hit for 14 and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope added 12 for the Lakers, who beat San Antonio for the first time this season after two losses. Los Angeles earned its fourth consecutive win.

DeMar DeRozan led the Spurs with 32 points in the loss while Rudy Gay scored a season-high 31 points, with 16 of those points in the third quarter. LaMarcus Aldridge scored 21 points for San Antonio.

The game was the second of a road back-to-back for the Spurs, who lost 139-105 in Utah on Tuesday. San Antonio has lost four of its past five outings, with the first three of those defeats coming by 30 or more points.

The Lakers led by as many as eight points in the first half before assuming a 50-45 advantage at intermission. James led all scorers in the half with 13 points, with Caldwell-Pope adding nine points and six rebounds over the first 24 minutes for the Lakers.

Los Angeles forward Brandon Ingram sprained his left ankle in the first quarter when he landed on Aldridge’s foot. Ingram left the game and did not return to the floor. X-rays taken at the arena showed that the ankle was not broken.

The teams square off again tonight in San Antonio for the fourth and final time this season. The game will be the opener of a six-game homestand for San Antonio that runs through Dec. 17.

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