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Pacers survive scare with 99-95 double OT win over Wizards

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Pacers survive scare with 99-95 double OT win over Wizards

C.J. Miles scored 25 points, George Hill added 24 and together they keyed a 7-2 spurt to open the second overtime Tuesday night as Indiana kept its playoff hopes alive with a 99-95 victory over Washington. The Pacers (38-43) have won six straight and will make a fifth straight playoff appearance if they win at Memphis — or if Brooklyn loses to Orlando — on the final night of the regular season.635646539846004170-USATSI-8519735

Marcin Gortat and Bradley Beal each scored 19 points for the Wizards (46-35). It was a grind for the Pacers, who struggled shooting all night and trailed 70-61 deficit with 7:07 left. They rallied to take a late 79-75 lead, then Washington forced overtime. Indiana didn’t lead again until Hill’s mid-range jumper 23 seconds into the second overtime made it 87-85. And Hill finally sealed it with a 3 with 27.8 seconds left.

Now, after a game that took nearly 3 1/2 hours to complete, the Pacers must fly to Memphis and play in less than 22 hours and grind out another win to make the playoffs. For most of the night, Indiana couldn’t seem to do anything right. Dunks were blocked. Long-range shots turned into air balls. Mid-range shots bounced hard off the backboard. Yet, somehow, the Pacers found a way to overcome all those problems when they needed it most.

The Wizards broke a 61-61 tie by scoring nine straight points midway through the fourth quarter. That’s when the Pacers finally started landing scoring punches. Hill’s 3-pointer cut the lead to 73-70. Miles’ three-point play made it 75-74, and Hill scored on a layup to give Indiana a 76-75 lead. When Roy Hibbert scored on a putback off a missed free throw, the Pacers led 79-75 with two minutes left in regulation. Washington rallied, tying the score at 81 on John Wall’s runner with 51.7 seconds left, then had two shots to win it at the end of regulation. The Wizards didn’t trail again until Hill’s shot to start the second overtime. After that, the Wizards never led again.