San Antonio, TX (SportsNetwork.com) - Patrick Beverley's tie-breaking tip-in highlighted a game-closing 9-0 spurt that lifted the Houston Rockets to a 112-106 victory over the San Antonio Spurs on Saturday at AT&T Center.
With the Rockets down by three and under a minute remaining in the game, James Harden drilled a left wing 3-pointer that tied the game at 106-106.
After Tony Parker missed a layup at the other end, Harden drove the lane and had his layup roll off the rim, but a crashing Beverley tipped the ball in over Tim Duncan to put Houston on top.
Manu Ginobili missed short on a 3-pointer on San Antonio's next possession and Harden grabbed the rebound before outletting to Chandler Parsons, who threw down an emphatic dunk to put an exclamation point on Houston's fifth straight victory.
Harden finished with 31 points, seven boards and six assists, while Parsons poured in 25 points and Dwight Howard added 13 points and 11 rebounds in the victory.
"Oh yeah. It's going to be a dogfight every time we see these guys," Howard said. "And that's what we want. That's going to make us better as a team, and it's going to make it fun for the fans to watch."
Parker paced San Antonio with 27 points, eight assists and six boards, while Duncan finished with 20 points and eight rebounds for the Spurs, who were handed their first home loss of the season after starting the campaign 7-0.
San Antonio trailed by 23 points late in the second quarter before Parker poured in the first 10 points of a 14-0 San Antonio surge that brought the team within 55-46 late in the half.
A Parsons trey with 6:40 left in the third extended Houston's margin to 75-60 before Duncan netted five straight points in a 20-6 swing that Parker capped with a jumper to get the Spurs within 81-80 with 1:49 left in the frame.
Parsons knocked down a jumper late in the third to push Houston's lead to three, but Marco Belinelli tallied the first eight points of the fourth to put the Spurs on top, 88-83.
The margin was back down to three with just under five minutes to play before Harden hit two free throws and then set up Terrence Jones' three-point play that gave Houston a 94-92 lead with 4:23 left.
A three-point play from Duncan just under two minutes later provided San Antonio with a 101-99 edge.
The Spurs then sent Howard to the free throw line on Houston's next two touches, and Howard hit 3-of-4 from the stripe to give Houston a 102-101 lead.
Ginobili drilled a triple on San Antonio's next possession to put the Spurs back on top before Harden split a pair of free throws to make it 104-103.
Parker responded with a layup at the other end to push the margin to three, but Howard came up with a big offensive rebound on Houston's next touch, setting up Harden's game-tying triple from the left wing.
"Well it's a great lesson for us," Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. "When you play a good basketball team, you've got to come with passion, edge and aggressiveness for 48 minutes. We did that for a half, so I think it was a good lesson for our guys. They got embarrassed for a whole half and in the second half their aggressiveness and attention to detail was very good."
The Rockets had lost seven straight and 27 of their last 31 trips to the Alamo City ... Houston improved to 5-3 on the road this season ... Jones added 10 points and 16 rebounds for the Rockets ... Houston owned the glass, outrebounding the Spurs 54-33 ... Belinelli finished with 18 points off the bench for San Antonio.