Udrih nets career-high 30 points to lead Kings past Clippers

LOS ANGELES -- With Kevin Martin sidelined, Beno Udrih knew he had to look to score more than usual.

He wound up scoring more than ever in an NBA game.

Udrih had a career-high 30 points, five rebounds and seven assists, and the short-handed Sacramento Kings never trailed in beating the Los Angeles Clippers 103-98 on Wednesday night for their first road victory of the season.

Udrih, a point guard in his fifth NBA season, shot 13-of-20 and had only one turnover in 38 minutes.

"Good for him. He deserves it," Kings coach Reggie Theus said regarding Udrih's career-high point total. "Tonight, he put it all together."

Udrih missed most of training camp with a strained left hip flexor, but it's obvious he's healthy now, unlike three of his teammates.

"He may have played one or two quarters all through training camp," Theus said. "He's played better every game."

Udrih scored 18 points Tuesday night in a 100-92 loss to the Detroit Pistons, the Kings' only setback in their last five games.

Sacramento played its second game without Martin, who is out at least a week after spraining his left ankle in a victory over Golden State on Sunday. Martin leads the Kings with 22.4 points per game.

The Kings also played without Quincy Douby (sore right ankle) and Francisco Garcia (strained right calf). Garcia, who averaged 12.3 points in 2007-08, hasn't played this season.

"Our first road win, it's really sweet," Udrih said. "It was a little bit scary, but we got this win. Kevin's out. Francisco's out. Somebody has to step up. I have to be more aggressive.

"We were playing a lot of pick and roll. I was just trying to make the right decision."

Udrih certainly made the right decision with a little over a minute left, hitting a baseline jumper as the shot clock was expiring to give the Kings a 102-98 lead. Rookie Jason Thompson's free throw with 5.7 seconds to play completed the scoring.

"At the end, they were able to spread the court and Beno Udrih just hurt us with dribble penetration and did a good job of creating shots for them," Clippers coach Mike Dunleavy said. "We were trying to keep him one way, trying to keep him to his right hand, but we kept on letting him get back to his left."

Brad Miller added 16 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists, Thompson had 16 points and 11 rebounds, and John Salmons scored 13 points for the Kings (4-5), who started the season with four straight road losses by an average of 20 points. They followed that with three wins in four home games before beating the Clippers.

"It's a win because of fortitude," said Theus, pointing to the fact that the Clippers hadn't played since Sunday and the Kings played Tuesday night before traveling to Los Angeles. "I thought this was just absolutely a team victory in every way. Twenty-five assists and holding them to 44 percent shooting is just tremendous after what happened last night."

Al Thornton led the Clippers (1-7) with 20 points. Ricky Davis scored 12 of his 16 in the fourth quarter, Marcus Camby added 13 points and Baron Davis had 12 points and 11 assists, but shot 4-of-15.

Two 3-pointers by Ricky Davis and another by rookie Mike Taylor helped the Clippers outscore Sacramento 11-4 to start the fourth quarter, cutting the Kings' lead to 85-80.

It was 89-84 when a basket by Udrih and four straight points by Mikki Moore gave Sacramento an 11-point lead with 4:48 remaining. But the Clippers battled back again, getting two 3-pointers from Ricky Davis during a 13-4 run that made it 99-97 with 1:52 remaining.

The Kings scored the first six points of the third quarter for a 56-45 lead, and were on top 81-69 entering the final period, matching their largest lead of the game.

"We had a good game plan and Coach prepared us," Ricky Davis said. "We just didn't go out and do what we were supposed to do. They got everything that they wanted. They got to the lane, they got open shots, and we just never were able to get a series of defensive stops. That ultimately cost us the game."

Before the game, Dunleavy refuted a report that he has differences with Baron Davis, who signed a 5-year, $65 million contract during the offseason.

"I didn't know we weren't on the same page," Dunleavy said. "We want to run every possession. Let's put that misnomer to bed."

A local columnist wrote that Davis "has winced at parts of Dunleavy's rigid system and is openly worrying that the thick playbook weighs heavily on the freelance ability that has made him one of the league's best guards."

Said Davis: "Our team is a work in progress. It's definitely a challenge for me, but at the same time, it's something that I'm willing to continue to grasp. This is a different system than the one I came from, so I basically have to study and make sure that I'm doing what he wants me to do out there as a point guard."

Game notes
The Kings didn't try a free throw until Udrih made two with 6:18 left in the second quarter -- their only attempts in the first half. The Clippers were 11-of-15 from the foul line in the opening 24 minutes. The Kings wound up going 14-of-18 and the Clippers 20-of-27. ... The Kings are the first team the Clippers have played that didn't make the playoffs last spring. ... The Kings shot 52.5 percent and outrebounded the Clippers 40-30.