of the first three innings, yield

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of the first three innings, yield

Postby gengm125 » Tue Jun 24, 2014 8:58 pm

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Toronto Raptors have had every excuse to give in this season. Theyve had injuries to key players, turned the roster over significantly with an early season trade and had low expectations after a regime change portended a possible tear down and rebuild. Kyle Lowry doesnt make excuses. Dwane Casey doesnt make excuses. And the Raptors havent given an inch while climbing the Eastern Conference ladder. Lowry had 20 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists for his fourth career triple-double, lifting the Raptors to a 111-104 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Sunday night. DeMar DeRozan added 25 points and seven rebounds and Steve Novak hit five 3-pointers for the surprising Raptors (35-26), who have won nine of their last 11 games to surge to third place in the East. They are nine games over .500 for the first time since 2006-07. "We try to keep everybodys spirits high even if its not going well on the basketball court and we dont let nothing get down on us," said DeRozan, whose team shot 58.3 per cent (14 for 24) on 3-pointers. "Thats the cool thing about our team. We continue to keep it going." Kevin Love had 26 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists, and Nikola Pekovic added 17 points and 11 rebounds for the Timberwolves. Minnesota has started a crucial four-game homestand with two losses in three games, and the teams hopes of climbing from 10th in the West into the playoff picture are looking bleak. "Weve got to go out and win games were not supposed to win," Wolves coach Rick Adelman said. "Thats the approach you have to take. If youre going to get down and you start moping about it, youre going to lose again." The Raptors got some bad news early in the day when they learned Patrick Patterson, a key member of the bench during their post-Rudy Gay trade surge, would miss the next seven to 10 days with a sprained right elbow. But just as they have done over the last two months, the Raptors found someone else to step up. Novak had played less than 13 minutes over the last month, but he scored a season-high in 18 minutes and Terrence Ross (15), Amir Johnson (15) and Greivis Vasquez (12) all reached double figures in scoring as well to earn a tough road win. "I cant say enough good things about those guys cause its going to take all of us, especially with Patrick being out," Casey said. The Wolves entered the night five games behind Dallas and Phoenix for the eighth and final spot in the West. Theyve now lost two of the first three games of a crucial four-game homestand. They put up a fight in this one, trimming a 10-point fourth-quarter deficit to 93-91 with five minutes to play. But Lowry drilled a 3-pointer, the Raptors locked down with the kind of defence that has gotten them this far and DeRozan finished the Wolves off with a 3-pointer from the left wing to improve Toronto to 26-2 when leading after three quarters. "Twenty games left, anything can happen," Love said. "We obviously have to go on some sort of a run. But if those other teams keep winning and pulling games out of their you-know-what, were in trouble." When Love sat down for a rest in the second quarter, the Raptors blasted Minnesota with a 15-0 run to take a 46-33 lead. Love ended the run with a jumper, fed Pekovic three straight times with pinpoint entry passes and also drew a charge during a 17-2 run that gave Minnesota a 50-48 lead. DeRozan and Ross both went to the bench early in the third quarter when they each picked up their fourth fouls and thats when Lowry took over. He was tenacious in his attack, hitting two jumpers and feeding Vasquez for a 3 to put Toronto up 75-68. He also played a big role in getting Wolves point guards Ricky Rubio and J.J. Barea in foul trouble with his aggressive penetration. "We needed all of his assists. He did a good job getting in there, penetrating, finding people," Casey said. We needed all his rebounds, especially with the way they crash the boards. He just had an all-around game." NOTES: Love made four 3-pointers, including one in the third quarter that broke Rashad McCants franchise record for 3s in a season. McCants made 142 3-pointers in 2007-08 to set the previous franchise record. ... The Raptors reserves outscored Minnesotas 32-16 for the game. ... Barea had another tough night, going 2 for 8 for five points. ... The Raptors recalled Dwight Buycks from the NBDLs Bakersfield Jam on Sunday. LOS ANGELES -- Carlos Ruiz capped his most productive series of the season so far with another clutch hit, and made a key defensive play at the plate to help the Philadelphia Phillies win a series from the Los Angeles Dodgers. Ruiz stroked a tiebreaking two-run double off Brian Wilson in the ninth inning, Marlon Byrd drove in four runs and the Phillies won 7-3 on Thursday night to take three of four from the defending NL West champions. Adrian Gonzalez -- whose fielding error in the fifth led to two runs -- tied the game 3-all in the seventh with a first-pitch homer to centre off Mike Adams, his former Padres teammate. But Philadelphia came back with four in the ninth. "I was basically trying to throw a backdoor cutter and it kind of ran back over the plate," Adams said. "Knowing Adrian from playing with him for many years, I knew he was going to be aggressive with the first pitch. I just missed my spot, and he did what he does." Ruiz regained the lead for the Phillies when he lined a 3-2 delivery down the right field line with one out after singles by Cody Asche and Ben Revere. Byrd greeted Jamey Wright with a bases-loaded two-run single after Wilson (0-2) intentionally walked Chase Utley and hit Ryan Howard with a pitch. Adams (1-0), making his third appearance after undergoing shoulder surgery last July 31 and missing the first two weeks of the season, pitched two innings for the victory despite allowing Gonzalezs homer. "Its been a while since I went two innings," Adams said. "When I came in after the seventh, they asked me if I could stretch it out and go back out for one more. So I said: Lets give it a try and see how it goes." Both managers lost replay challenges. The Dodgers were trailing 3-2 in the fifth when Asche, the Phillies third baseman, fielded Yasiel Puigs grounder behind the bag and threw home, where Ruiz tagged out Hanley Ramirez as he came in standing up without a collision. "That was a big play," Ruiz said. "It was a good throw. I was lucky because those plays happen so fast, you dont have time to think, but I got the ball early. I was on the side of home plate a little bit and he had room to slide, but he didnt and we got the out. I was stilll a little worried it would get changed because now with the replay, you never know.dddddddddddd" Dodgers manager Don Mattingly requested a review from umpire Mike DiMuro based on the new rule pertaining to home plate collisions. It took several minutes but the call was upheld. "Before the ball is thrown, you cant set up where the runner doesnt have anywhere to slide, the way we understand it. Thats what we see on video," Mattingly said. "We felt like it didnt have a place to slide." Ryne Sandberg challenged a call by first base ump Hunter Wendelstedt in the Dodgers sixth. Juan Uribe was initially ruled safe on a grounder to shortstop Freddy Galvis. After a review of several minutes -- and a few choruses of "If It Takes Forever" by stadium organist Nancy Bea Hefley -- the call stood. Kyle Kendrick pitched 5 2-3 innings and allowed two runs and 10 hits, including a two-run homer by Uribe. The right-hander remained 0-7 in his last 12 starts. Dodgers right-hander Dan Haren was charged with three runs -- one earned -- and seven hits in six innings while striking out seven. Kendrick, who gave up a two-out single in each of the first three innings, yielded Uribes two-out homer to left field after a leadoff double by Gonzalez. But the Phillies capitalized on Gonzalezs second error of the season to grab a 3-2 lead. The three-time Gold Glove winner botched a one-out grounder by Utley with runners at the corners, as Revere scored the Phillies first run. Utley was credited with an RBI, and Byrd drove in two more with a double just out of the reach of a diving Puig in right-centre. Gonzalezs error was the Dodgers 23rd in 23 games. NOTES: The Phillies entered Thursday with a bullpen ERA of 5.64, the worst in the majors. ... Ruiz was 7 for 14 in the four-game series with a home run, four walks and his first six RBIs of the season. ... Byrd had two doubles in three at-bats against Haren, and is 12 for 24 for his career against him. ... Dodgers pitchers have given up 14 unearned runs. ... Jimmy Rollins, 5 for 21 against Haren, got the night off and Galvis started at SS for the first time since Sept. 7 of last season. ... Puig was 0 for 3 against Kendrick, after coming in 5 for 6 against him with a double and a triple. ' ' '
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