ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) – Jameer Nelson scored 22 points, Dwight Howard had 16 points and 11 rebounds, and the Orlando Magic held off the Indiana Pacers 96-91 on Wednesday night.

Jermaine O’Neal led Indiana with 23 points and 11 rebounds, while Stephen Jackson scored 19 points – his third straight double-digit game off the bench.

Indiana shot 18-of-37 in the first half, but lost its touch in the second. The Pacers hit just two of their first 11 in the fourth quarter and 13-of-40 in the half, staying close only from the free throw line.

Grant Hill and Darko Milicic each hit jumpers on consecutive possessions to give Orlando a 90-82 lead with 2:36 left in the fourth. But the Magic missed several free throws down the stretch, allowing Indiana to creep within three points with 7.8 seconds left on Jamaal Tinsley’s layup.

Hill hit two free throws the next trip down to seal the win.

AP-ES-11-22-06 2149EST


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