Warriors exciting OT win evens series

ORACLE ARENA — It wasn’t pretty to watch for 48 minutes, but the Warriors pulled it together in overtime to put themselves back in the series.

In a must-win situation, rookie Harrison Barnes was the star, scoring a career-high 26 points and grabbing 10 rebounds in the Warriors 97-87 overtime win against the Spurs in Game 4. The best of seven series in the Western Conference Semifinals now stands even at two games apiece.

In overtime the Warriors went on a 9-0 run while San Antonio missed nine consecutive shots including a pair of free throws. Veterans Manu Ginobili and Tony Parker both missed wide open looks from beyond the arc. The Spurs failed to score in the extra period until Danny Green hit a three with 1:29 remaining.

Jarrett Jack made two free throws finishing the night with 24 points to seal the win with 58.7 seconds left and the Warriors beat the Spurs by ten points.

Jack gave a lot of credit to Barnes for the win on Sunday, saying he was wise beyond his years:

Warriors guard Jarrett Jack

Video: NBA/ESPN

“He carried us for much of the game. He did a tremendous job of leading the way, being aggressive, attacking the basket and we kind of followed his lead…I couldn’t be more proud of him.”

The 4th quarter lead for San Antonio was as much as eight points but the Warriors fought back to trail by only four points inside the final three minutes.

Klay Thompson’s baseline jumper with 2:34 left cut the lead to 82-80. Tim Duncan was denied inside the lane as the shot clock was running down. Andrew Bogut came down with the rebound and Jack’s pull up jumper tied the game with just under a minute remaining.

Meanwhile, Parker’s wing jumper with 39.4 seconds to play gave San Antonio another two point edge.

After a timeout, Thompson dribbled from the three point line into the key and scored on a layup to retie the game at 84-84 with 30 seconds left.

Ginobili attempted a 3 with 20.0 seconds left but missed. After a scramble for the loose ball on the court, Jack retrieved it and the Warriors had the ball for the final 16 seconds.

The energy and stress at the arena was at an all time high with the Warriors in position to win the game.

Jack held for the last shot but burned too much time off the clock. The final attempt was a tough fadeaway jumper which clanged off the rim sending the game to overtime.

Warriors star guard Stephen Curry sprained his left ankle for the second time in the postseason Friday night, and coach Mark Jackson said he knew about an hour before tip off that Curry would be limited:

Warriors coach Mark Jackson

Video: NBA/ESPN

“Outside of chapel, looked at Steph and had a conversation with him. He said, I’m going to give you what I got, coach. That’s not the language he speaks. I knew right away that he was not 100 percent.”

With Curry playing less and early foul trouble for Bogut, Carl Landry and Festus Ezeli, Barnes became the go-to guy in Game 4.

Barnes told SFBay after the injury to David Lee he’s been trying to adjust and do the best with what coach Jackson asks of him:

Warriors forward Harrison Barnes

Video: NBA/ESPN

“I remember before Game 2 in Denver, coach came to me and said, I’m going to start you at the four. I don’t expect you to go out there and be an All-Star, give us 20 and 10, but be productive, but I believe in you, just play as hard as you can. Ever since I heard that, I’ve been trying to go out there and just contribute.”

The Warriors were only down by three early in the third quarter after a clutch 3-pointer by Stephen Curry. After a defensive breakdown allowed Danny Green to shoot a triple, Curry answered back with another from distance.

Stephen Curry added 22 points on the night despite being injured, including five of his seven shots from 3-point range. Bogut dominated the boards with 18 rebounds despite playing through foul trouble.

The Spurs were led by Ginobili with 21 points off the bench and Tim Duncan who added 19 points and 15 rebounds.

Ginobili told SFBay he has a lot of respect for the Warriors as a young and fiercely athletic team and enjoys playing the kind of defensive and tough basketball that took place Friday:

Spurs guard Manu Ginobili

Audio: Sarah Todd/SFBay

“It’s fun playing in the playoffs. But, of course, playing a talented team like them in a great arena like this with fans going crazy is always fun. It’s completely different than playing a regular-season game. That’s why we are here, to play these types of games. It’s what we all love.”

The Warriors now head to San Antonio for Game 5 which will air Tuesday at 6:30 pm on TNT, and will return to Oracle for Game 6, Thursday night.

Notes

Golden State won its second-ever postseason overtime game (first at home) by outscoring San Antonio 13-3 in the extra session. … The two teams combined for only 36 assists on 68 made baskets, with no player dishing out more than four helpers. … Golden State out rebounded San Antonio, 65-51 and has won the battle of the boards in every game this series. … Barnes is the first Warriors rookie with a 26-point, 10-rebound game in the playoffs since Billy Owens in 1992. … Barnes now has six career double-doubles, two in the postseason, and six career 20/10 games (three in the playoffs). … Jack finished with 24 points off the bench, his most as a reserve this postseason. … Duncan posted his second consecutive double-double, his 142nd career playoff double-double, tying him with Shaquille O’neal for the third most career playoff double-doubles behind only Wilt Chamberlain (143) and Magic Johnson (157).