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Hornets score early, often in crushing Bucks

Jan 6, 2023; Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA; Charlotte Hornets guard LaMelo Ball (1) drives against Milwaukee Bucks guard Jrue Holiday (21) in the first half at Fiserv Forum. Mandatory Credit: Michael McLoone-USA TODAY Sports

Charlotte Hornets guards Terry Rozier and LaMelo Ball took turns raining 3-point baskets on the host Milwaukee Bucks in a 138-109 romp Friday night.

Rozier scored 39 points, bagging six 3s, and Ball racked up 24 points with seven of his eight field goals from 3-point range as the Hornets won for just the second time in seven games. They scored 51 first-quarter points, tying the NBA record for most points in an opening quarter.

Charlotte racked up 14 of its 20 3-pointers in the first half when it compiled 84 points.

P.J. Washington finished with 23 points, including five 3s. Mason Plumlee had 17 points and 15 rebounds, Jalen McDaniels posted 11 points and JT Thor had 10 points.

Ball finished with 12 assists. He has poured in at least 20 points in 14 consecutive games.

The Bucks, who had won three of four games entering the night, never got in much of a rhythm and were led by 19 points from reserve Bobby Portis Jr. AJ Green had 13 points, while Jrue Holiday and Grayson Allen both provided 12 points.

Milwaukee’s Giannis Antetokounmpo, one of the NBA’s leading scorers, was limited to a season-low nine points on 2-for-7 shooting from the field in 22 minutes. His previous low this season was 16 points twice.

The Bucks committed 16 turnovers to just five for Charlotte.

Milwaukee was in an 84-60 halftime hole. Rozier had 25 of those first-half points for the Hornets, who had season-highs with 84 points in the half. The point total was the second-highest mark for any half in franchise history.

Charlotte scored 25 points in the game’s first five minutes.

Even with all the scoring from the Hornets, the Bucks matched them from beyond the 3-point line as both teams shot 20-for-48 on 3s. Milwaukee’s 3-point shooting was led by Portis, Holiday, Allen and Green with three apiece.

It was a rare home dud for the Bucks, who fell to 16-5 at home.

–Field Level Media