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Rockets edge Warriors, playoff hopes still alive

Courtney Lee scored 20 points, while Goran Dragic added 18 points and seven assists as the Houston Rockets snapped a six- game slide with a 99-96 win over the Golden State Warriors on Saturday.

Luis Scola finished with 13 points and five boards for the Rockets, who are a half-game behind Utah, which is currently playing Orlando, for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference.

The Rockets are also even with the Suns, who lost to Denver on Saturday, for ninth place.

Klay Thompson netted 24 points for the Warriors, losers of eight consecutive contests.

Two Brandon Rush baskets sandwiched around a Lee three-pointer made it 96-92 in favor of the Rockets with 2:23 remaining in the fourth quarter.

Thompson's jumper pulled the Warriors within two before Chase Budinger made 1- of-2 from the foul line to make it 97-94 with 1:07 to go.

After Richard Jefferson turned the ball over at the other end, Patrick Patterson pulled down two crucial offensive rebounds and sealed the win with a tip-in, giving Houston a 99-94 advantage with 7.2 seconds to play.

Earlier, Scola scored six points during a 10-0 Rockets run midway through the first quarter, which gave the hosts an 18-9 lead.

The Rockets led 31-21 after one, but the Warriors battled back to pull within 58-55 heading into the break after they outscored Houston, 34-27, in the second quarter.

Dragic netted seven points in the third and Houston took a 77-71 advantage into the fourth.

Game Notes

The Rockets tallied 22 second-chance points and held a 48-34 advantage on points in the paint...Houston was 10-of-26 from beyond the arc...The Rockets pulled down 15 offensive rebounds.