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Wizards 91, Pacers 78

The SportsXchange

WASHINGTON -- Guard John Wall scored 20 points and center Marcin Gortat had 17 points and 12 rebounds as the Washington Wizards picked up a rare victory over the Indiana Pacers, winning 91-78 on Friday night.

Forward Al Harrington had 12 points for the Wizards (37-35), who had lost two straight and four of five overall. Washington never trailed, opened double-digit leads in both halves, including 77-56 midway through the second half.

The Wizards had lost 11 of 12 to the Pacers dating to 2008, including the first two matchups this season.

Forward Paul George scored 19 points on 6-of-22 shooting from the field for the Eastern Conference-leading Pacers (52-21). Indiana committed 17 turnovers and shot 35.4 percent from the floor en route losing its season-high fourth straight road game.

After scoring in the 70s one time in their opening 69 games, the Pacers have done so in three of four games.

The Wizards led 44-37 at halftime and 57-51 before closing the third quarter on a 17-5 run. Forward Martell Webster opened the fourth quarter with a 3-pointer to give Washington its largest lead before the crowd of 19,708. After Indiana pulled closer at 84-74, Washington scored the next seven points, five from Wall.

On Wednesday, Indiana downed the Miami Heat 84-83 in a highly anticipated and hotly contested matchup at home.

Forward Lance Stephenson, ejected in the win over Miami, scored 13 points and tied a career high with 14 rebounds. He also missed all nine of his shots from the field in the first half and finished 3 of 13.

Washington returned home on Wednesday after a 1-3 road trip and promptly lost to the Phoenix Suns 99-93. That struggling version rarely showed against the East's top team.

Washington entered halftime leading 44-37 after a streaky second quarter for both sides. Harrington alone outscored Indiana 10-0 early in the quarter as the Wizards jumped ahead 41-25. The Pacers then countered with a 12-0 spurt before Webster, who finished with 11 points, ended the first-half scoring with a 3-pointer.

The Pacers committed six turnovers less than five minutes into the game and 10 during the first half.

Wizards guard and second-leading scorer Bradley Beal, who suffered a right hip pointer in Wednesday's loss, had seven points on 2-of-13 shooting from the field in 35 minutes.

NOTES: Indiana took the first two games of the head-to-head series, both at home, by a combined 47 points. ... The Wizards entered Friday's game in sixth place in the Eastern Conference, 1 1/2 games behind the Brooklyn Nets and 1 1/2 games ahead of the Charlotte Bobcats. ... Indiana coach Frank Vogel previously served as a scout for the Wizards. ... The Pacers remain on the road with Sunday afternoon's matchup at the Cleveland Cavaliers. Washington hosts Southeast Division opponent Atlanta on Saturday. Six of the Wizards' final 10 games are at the Verizon Center. The Pacers will play five of their final nine games on the road.
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