SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Larry Brown finally got his first victory in six games as New York’s coach, with rookie Channing Frye scoring 19 points in the Knicks’ 105-95 win over the struggling Sacramento Kings.

Stephon Marbury had 17 points and seven assists for the Knicks, who jumped to a big early lead and hung on late to halt their worst start in 18 years during Brown’s first season in charge of his hometown team.

Jamal Crawford and Eddy Curry added 16 points apiece as New York snapped an eight-game losing streak in Sacramento – its longest current skid against any opponent – with the Knicks’ first victory at Arco Arena since Feb. 20, 1997.

Brown’s club won by making 54 percent of its shots – and finding an opponent with even worse late-game execution. The Knicks wasted second-half leads in both of their last two games, and blew most of a 19-point lead in Sacramento, but hung on when the Kings couldn’t capitalize on several chances to rally.

Peja Stojakovic scored 14 of his 31 points in the fourth quarter, but missed seven 3-pointers for the Kings, whose 2-5 start has caused discontent in Arco Arena’s nightly sellout crowds.

Mike Bibby had 18 points and seven assists, but Sacramento was booed off the court after a horrific first half in which New York led by 19 points. The boos returned when the Knicks scored 12 straight points spanning the third and fourth quarters to blow it open again.

Marbury had six turnovers in the first three quarters, but kept New York steady down the stretch. Sacramento got within 97-91 on Jason Hart’s free throw with 1:27 left, but Marbury fed Crawford for a layup before hitting two free throws with 47 seconds to play.

Referee Steve Javie then ejected Shareef Abdur-Rahim with two technical fouls during the ensuing timeout, even though the Sacramento forward apparently wasn’t talking to him.

The Knicks made a 16-3 run spanning the first and second quarters, hitting open shots and thriving against Sacramento’s tentative offense. New York led 38-19 on Jamal Crawford’s 3-pointer early in the second, and the Kings made 12 turnovers before getting booed off the court with a 57-41 halftime deficit. Frye scored 13 points in the half.

Sacramento finally woke up in the third quarter, making a 16-6 run and pulling within 72-66 before Marbury’s three-point play started a 12-0 run.

Both teams have started the season slowly, though both have spent most of it on the road. New York is just halfway through a six-game West Coast road trip, while the Kings opened the schedule with three road games and another tough trip to Denver.

Notes: Hart dived into the Knicks’ bench to save a loose ball midway through the second quarter – and Malik Rose got a technical foul for holding onto Hart, preventing him from running back upcourt. … New York F Matt Barnes, a Sacramento-area native who played for the Kings last season, started for the Knicks and scored two points in 14 minutes. … Last Tuesday, Detroit snapped its own eight-game losing streak in Sacramento.

AP-ES-11-13-05 2342EST


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