|Duncan's 20 points lead San Antonio Spurs to 113-91 victory over Panathinaikos|
|Written by Admin|
|Saturday, 13 October 2007 18:04|
AP Photo TXDS101
By ELIZABETH WHITE
Associated Press Writer
SAN ANTONIO (AP) -Tim Duncan scored 20 points to lead the San Antonio Spurs to a 113-91 victory Saturday over Panathinaikos of Greece.
The reigning NBA champion Spurs never trailed against the Euroleague champions and were up by as many as 29 in the exhibition game.
Duncan played just over 21 minutes and sat out the fourth quarter, as did the Spurs' other starters.
Manu Ginobili added 15 points for San Antonio, including a highlight-worthy dunk early in the third quarter and two 3-pointers. Brent Barry added 12 points for the Spurs and was 3-of-6 from behind the arc in the team's second preseason contest.
``It was a good chance to practice a lot of things,'' Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. ``Especially against a well-coached team and a successful team. We're happy to have that opportunity.''
Sarunas Jasikevicius and Mike Batiste led Panathinaikos, which has won four Euroleague titles the past eight years, with 18 points apiece. Sani Becirovic had 13 points and Milos Vujanic added 12. The team lost to the Houston Rockets 107-70 in an exhibition game on Thursday.
The Spurs dropped their first preseason game 88-67 to the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday.
The Spurs' Tony Parker sat out for the second game in a row to rest his body after a long summer playing for the French national team.
Heading into the second quarter the score was 32-25, but the Spurs took over from there, extending their lead to as many as 19 points with 3:19 left in the half on Barry's third 3-pointer of the night.
Jasikevicius led Panathinaikos with 15 points at the half, but the Spurs were ahead 60-44.
Ginobili's flying dunk with 10:40 left in the third put the Spurs up 64-46, and the lead grew to 89-60 with 1:12 left after a three-point play by Barry.
Ginobili, who logged 22 minutes on the floor, more than any of his teammates, said it felt good to be on the court.
``It's always fun to play, especially against a good team, or a team that creates tough matchups,'' Ginobili said. ``So it was a good test for us and it was fun, as long as I played. Then when I sit it was not as fun.''
Duncan finished 6-of-9 from the field and made eight of 10 free throws.
In the fourth, the Spurs gave reserves and training camp invitees a chance to play, including Darius Washington, who had 10 points.
``We had a chance to see who is progressing,'' Popovich said. ``It was a good night.''
Panathinaikos never got closer than 107-89 with 2:16 left in the final period.
Notes: Blue and white Greek flags were scattered throughout the crowd, with one large group up high periodically chanting and singing to the drum they apparently brought along. ... Spurs backup point guard Jacque Vaughn didn't play due to a strained right calf. ... San Antonio players offered Panathinaikos players Spurs caps before tip-off, and the squad from Greece reciprocated with miniature team flags. ... The teams were tied just once, at 3-3 in the first quarter.