Sacramento Kings head coach Keith Smart led his team to victory against the Golden State Warriors at the Power Balance Pavilion on Saturday.
The Warriors started the first quarter off strong. Shooting guard Dorell Wright scored 14 points versus center DeMarcus Cousins’ and shooting guard Marcus Thornton’s eight points each.
By the end of the first half, the Warriors made eight of 12 3-pointers and maintained the lead at 54 points, putting them one point ahead of the Kings.
Thornton, who had trouble shooting in the first half, made his comeback in the third quarter. He made four 3-pointers and scored 18 of the Kings’ 34 points, putting his team eleven points ahead of the Golden State Warriors at 87-76.
At the end of the fourth quarter, the Kings had given up their lead and were trailing by three points, but point guard Tyreke Evans scored a three, his third that quarter, which tied the Kings with the Warriors.
“I got the ball and let it fly,” said Evans when asked about the shot. “It just went in.”
With only a second left in the fourth quarter, Evans missed his final shot within regulation and the game went into overtime.
Cousins pulled the Kings together before they went into overtime and told them that if they were going to win, they would have to play as a team. And that is just what they did.
“For him to step up after the game he’s having,” said Smart at the press conference after, “and pull the guys together and focus on not by themselves but team, that was huge.”
By overtime, the Kings’ defense had worn down the Warriors, who scored on one of nine shots. Evans made five of the Kings’ nine points in overtime, and personally made 26 points by the end of the game.
Cousins was a huge asset to the game, with 21 points and a career-high 20 rebounds in one game. Thornton, who scored 28 points, was the leading scorer for the game.
Wright scored 24 points for the Warriors and made his record-high 16 3-pointers.
This was the third time the Kings made it into the triple-digits and the second time they won consecutive games all season.
“We found the way to win the game,” said Smart. “And we gotta keep doing that.”
Photos courtesy of Darren Hall photography.