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Suns 115, Kings 107

Suns 115, Kings 107PHOENIX (AP) - The Phoenix Suns had a bad shooting night against Sacramento - until it counted the most.

The Suns made 5 of 6 3-pointers in the final 6 minutes - three by Channing Frye and two by Steve Nash - to pull away for a 115-107 victory on Saturday night, snapping the young Kings' four-game winning streak.

Nash scored 32 points, 20 in the second half, and Amare Stoudemire had 18 points and 21 rebounds in Phoenix's lone home game in a stretch of seven contests.

"You have to have confidence to step up and make shots down the stretch," Nash said, "and we did a good job of that."

Tyreke Evans scored 21 points, and Andres Nocioni had 20 for the Kings, who lost for the eighth straight time in Phoenix. Kenny Thomas added 18 rebounds.

The game was tied at 90 with 8 minutes to play but Sacramento missed four of six free throws in a crucial stretch.

"We missed too many layups, missed free throws at big times and we were the victim of one of the two greatest closers in basketball," Sacramento coach Paul Westphal said. "Nash was phenomenal in the fourth quarter, and we would have had to play perfect basketball at that point to get the win."

The Suns, coming off consecutive road losses to New York and Cleveland, improved to 7-0 at home.

"We are a little bit tired from the travel," Phoenix coach Alvin Gentry said. "I'm not making excuses, this is just the facts. We are a little tired right now and not quite as energetic as we've been. We'll get back there, but now we are just a little bit spent."

The Suns, who play 15 of their first 22 games away from home, are back on the road Sunday night against the Lakers in Los Angeles.

Frye, 1 of 7 from the field through three quarters, made all three of his shots - each of them a 3-pointer - in the fourth to finish with 15 points. Jason Richardson added 16 points, and Grant Hill 14.

"You've just got to keep shooting," Frye said. "They're going to go in eventually."

Frye made two 3s and Nash one in a 12-3 run that opened a 105-96 lead with 3 1/2 minutes to play. Phoenix sealed it with a 3 by Nash with 1:10 to play and another by Frye with 44.8 seconds to go.

The Kings were up 83-82 after three quarters and there were three lead changes and four ties before Phoenix took the lead for good at 95-93 on Nash's 4-foot fadeaway with 7 1/2 minutes to play.

Moments later, after a mad scramble for the ball, Nash threw to an open Frye, who sank a 3-pointer to make it 98-94 with 5:57 left. After Stoudemire made one of two free throws, Frye sank a 3 as the 24-second clock expired to put the Suns ahead 102-94 with 4:10 to go.

"I guess you can say it was a grind-it-out win," Gentry said. "That's really the only way you can describe it."

Down 60-55 at the half, Sacramento went ahead 65-64 with a 10-4 surge to start the second half, and neither team led by more than three points the rest of the third quarter. The Kings led 83-82 entering the fourth.

"On the one hand, I'm really happy our young team played them so tough," Westphal said, "and on the other hand, I'm anxious for the day when we can learn the lessons we learned tonight and maybe get a game like this."

NOTES: Sacramento's four straight victories were all at home. ... The Kings played the first of four games in five nights. ... Phoenix has played the most road games in the NBA so far this season (13). ... The Suns' Lou Amundson missed the game because of the flu. ... Both times the Suns have met the Lakers this season have been on the road on their second game on consecutive nights.

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Added: December 6, 2009


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