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Raptors hold off Hornets with balanced effort

Jan 10, 2023; Toronto, Ontario, CAN;  Charlotte Hornets guard Dennis Smith Jr. (8) has his shot attempt blocked by Toronto Raptors center Christian Koloko (35) and forward OG Anunoby (3) in the first half at Scotiabank Arena. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Pascal Siakam scored 28 points and the Toronto Raptors defeated the visiting Charlotte Hornets 132-120 Tuesday night.

Gary Trent Jr. added 24 points for the Raptors, who have won two in a row and split the first four games of a six-game homestand. The Raptors made a season-best 20 3-pointers.

O.G. Anunoby scored 22 points for the Raptors. Precious Achiuwa scored 13, Chris Boucher had 12 points and Fred VanVleet had 11 points.

Terry Rozier scored 33 points for the Hornets, who have lost two in a row. LaMelo Ball added 24 points and 14 assists, Mason Plumlee had 21 points, P.J. Washington had 13 points and Jalen McDaniels scored 11.

Toronto took a two-point lead into the fourth quarter. Boucher’s 3-pointer gave Toronto an eight-point lead with 8:54 to play. Plumlee scored the next five points. Ball later made a 3-pointer, cutting the lead to one with 7:05 to go.

The Raptors responded with two 3-pointers by Anunoby and another by VanVleet to start a 14-0 run that bumped the lead to 122-107 with 3:26 remaining.

The Raptors used an 8-2 surge to take an eight-point lead with 4:28 to play in the second quarter. Rozier made a 3-point shot with 3:03 to play, cutting the lead to four. Boucher scored five straight points to make the lead nine, as Toronto went on to lead 72-66 at halftime.

The Raptors shot 55.1 percent (27-for-49) from the field in the first half with Siakam scoring 18 points.

The Hornets shot 57.4 percent (27-for-47) from the field in the half. Rozier led with 15 points.

Charlotte’s JT Thor hit a 3-point shot to trim the margin to two points with 3:00 remaining in the third quarter. On the Hornets’ next possession, Thor came back to tie the game on a nine-footer with 2:23 left. Cody Martin’s layup gave Charlotte a two-point lead but Malachi Flynn’s 3-pointer put Toronto ahead by one, eventually leading 96-94 after three quarters.

Gordon Hayward (hamstring) did not play for Charlotte. Toronto’s Otto Porter Jr. (foot surgery) is out for the season.

–Field Level Media