Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 11/9/12
WASHINGTON -- The game's conclusion included two ejections after a flagrant foul by Washington Wizards rookie Bradley Beal led to a retaliatory push to the ground by the Milwaukee Bucks' Brandon Jennings. The tipping point came when the Bucks' bench pushed back Washington's second half charge. Monta Ellis paced five double-digit scorers with 22 points and the Bucks' reserves keyed a 13-0 second-half run in a 101-91 win over the winless Washington Wizards on Friday night. Mike Dunleavy and Larry Sanders each scored 13 points off the bench for the Bucks (3-1), who rebounded following an 18-point home loss to Memphis on Wednesday. After the Wizards fought back from an 11-point hole in the third quarter to the game, Sanders and fellow reserves Ekpe Udoh and Beno Udrih carried the entire scoring load during the decisive spurt. Udoh's 3-point play that broke a 72-72 tie with 4.4 seconds left in the third quarter. Udrih made consecutive jumpers starting the fourth quarter and Sanders hook shot off a Dunleavy pass gave Milwaukee an 85-72 lead with 7:32 remaining. With 23 seconds remaining and Washington down 99-90, Beal was ejected in his fourth career game after being called for a flagrant 2 foul after coming down with two arms on a driving Ellis. Jennings, who scored 12 points, was also tossed after entering the fray and shoving Beal to the ground. "That's what teammates are supposed to do," Ellis said. "That was a great job. That's what we've got to do. We've got to make our mark. When somebody fouls us like that, we've got to react." Beal felt that he "went for the ball," and chalked up Jennings' actions as "just defending his teammate." As for teammate Jordan Crawford's take? "Just a lot of pretending going on," he said. "A lot of pretending." There was nothing imaginary about the production from Milwaukee's bench, which entered the game averaging 45.3 points, second only to Washington's league-leading 53.7. Going head-to-head, the Bucks finished with a decisive 49-22 advantage. "Our bench was good tonight," Bucks coach Scott Skiles said. "We had a lot of guys coming in and contributing for us." Beal, the third overall pick in the June draft, scored a career-high 22 points for the Wizards (0-4), who opened the game with 12 straight points. Trevor Ariza tallied 15 points for Washington, which failed to hold a fourth-quarter lead for the first time this season. Washington and Detroit remain the NBA's only teams yet to record a victory. By the time Beal snapped Milwaukee's scoring streak with two free throws, Washington's drought reached over 5 minutes. "We were on 72 it felt like for eternity. It had to be five and a half minutes. I don't know the exact time, but it felt long," said Wizards coach Randy Wittman, who has witnessed similar scoring struggles throughout the season. "You go from a one-, two-point game to down 10, 11. Somehow, we got to figure out how to alleviate those things from our game." Four consecutive free throws pulled the Wizards closer at 89-84 with 3:06 remaining, but Brandon Jennings responded with a jump shot. Washington got no closer, losing its second home game on the season. Trailing 60-49 early in the third quarter, Washington rallied with a 13-2 run, including 10 straight points. Ariza, acquired with Emeka Okafor from the New Orleans Hornets in the offseason, started the spurt with an alley-oop pass to Trevor Booker and capped it with a right wing 3-pointer, tying the game 62-62. The ex-Hornets have struggled early in their Washington stints, but each established season-highs in points while swiping three steals apiece. Okafor and Booker each scored 11 points. Washington's fifth starter, A.J. Price, finished with 12 points and nine assists. The Wizards' starting lineup scored 71 of the team's 91 points. Washington's bench outscored the starters in each of the previous three games. "Right now we've really had one group one night, the second group not very good," Wittman said. "Then it's kind of vice versa. We need everybody. We're not good enough right now to afford off nights by a group and survive it." Jennings and Ellis each committed six of Milwaukee's 21 turnovers while the Wizards collectively had 20. Victimized by slow starts offensively in each of the previous three losses, Washington made its first six shots and fast-breaked its way to a quick 12-0 lead less than 3 minutes in. After Booker's jumper put the Wizards up a dozen, Tobias Harris' 3-pointer started a 21-4 rally the other way. Ersan Ilyasova made two 3-pointers and scored 11 points as the Bucks lead 30-28 after the first quarter, despite Washington shooting 60.9 percent from the field. Jennings and Dunleavy each scored 10 as the Bucks led 56-47 at halftime. Notes: Forward Drew Gooden was a healthy scratch for the Bucks. ... This game marked the first of three meetings between the Eastern Conference squads this season. Milwaukee won the series 3-1 last season. ... The Wizards continue playing without forward Nene (plantar fasciitis) and point guard John Wall (knee), who is not projected to return until after Thanksgiving with a stress injury... Washington plays at the Indiana Pacers on Saturday while Milwaukee returns home to face the Boston Celtics.
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