July 17, 2011BOX SCORE GIANTS VIDEOMLB PAGE MLB SCOREBOARDSAN DIEGO (AP) Chris Stewart drove in the go-ahead run with a suicide squeeze in the 11th inning, then pounced on a bunt moments later to start a slick double play that helped the San Francisco Giants hold off the San Diego Padres 4-3 on Sunday.Emmanuel Burriss, who entered as a pinch-runner in the ninth, reached on a one-out single off Chad Qualls (4-3) in the 11th. Burriss stole second and continued to third on catcher Kyle Phillips' throwing error.With the infield in, Qualls pitched out on his first delivery to Stewart, who stayed in the game after pinch-hitting in the ninth. But on a 3-1 count, Stewart laid down a perfect bunt to easily score Burriss.The Giants stole six bases, two by Burriss, to tie a San Francisco record.Javier Lopez (5-1) pitched two innings for the win and Brian Wilson wriggled out of a jam in the 11th for his 28th save in 32 chances.Wilson walked his first two batters and Phillips tried to advance them with a bunt in front of home plate. Stewart quickly popped out of his crouch and fired to third baseman Pablo Sandoval, who relayed to first for a 2-5-4 double play that fired up the Giants' infield.Logan Forsythe walked before Wilson retired Alberto Gonzalez on a game-ending grounder.San Francisco, which has won seven of its last nine games, took three of four in the series. It was the eighth time the clubs have played each other in the last 11 games.The Padres have lost eight of nine.San Diego's Orlando Hudson hit a two-run, go-ahead single in the sixth inning to take advantage of a mistake by catcher Eli Whiteside.With one out in the sixth and Everth Cabrera at the plate, Matt Cain threw a pitch in the dirt that Cabrera swung at and missed for strike three. But plate umpire Marvin Hudson ruled that Whiteside didn't catch the ball. While Cabrera took off for first base, Whiteside held up his glove, indicating he had caught the ball, while he argued with Hudson.By the time Whiteside threw to first, Cabrera beat the throw on what was officially ruled a passed ball.Cameron Maybin followed with a single and the Padres loaded the bases when Ryan Ludwick was hit on the hand by Cain's fastball. Hudson then singled in two runs to put the Padres ahead 3-2.The Giants tied the game in the seventh when Whiteside reached on a fielder's choice, stole second and scored on Andres Torres' single.Cain allowed three runs - one earned - and three hits over six innings. The All-Star right-hander struck out nine and walked two.The Padres scored an unearned run in the first after Will Venable led off with a walk and went to third on a fielding error by second baseman Mike Fontenot on Cabrera's grounder. Venable scored one out later on Ludwick's sacrifice fly.San Francisco tied the score at 1 in the second after consecutive singles by Nate Schierholtz and Aubrey Huff to start the inning followed by Cody Ross' sacrifice fly.Schierholtz had a run-scoring single in the sixth for a 2-1 lead.Padres starter Mat Latos gave up three runs and seven hits in seven innings.NOTES: Cain is 5-1 with a 2.01 ERA in his last nine starts. ... Padres SS Jason Bartlett was placed on the paternity leave list. San Diego recalled Cabrera from Triple-A Tucson. ... Padres 3B Chase Headley missed his second straight game with a strained right calf.
It may have helped that they had been at home for roughly three weeks.
It surely was to their benefit that the NBA schedule provided three days without a game before they confronted perhaps one of the most rigorous weeks of the season.
The Warriors, however, still had to do the work. They still had to finish.
They still had to beat the team that had roughed them up 22 days earlier, and then squelch another squad coming into Oracle Arena on a wave of emotion and, finally, take to the road and get back at a team that handed them a loss in Oakland.
Done, done and done. And in such a fashion that forward Draymond Green referred to it as “our best week of the season.”
In putting away the Rockets 125-108 on Friday in Houston, the Warriors closed out the traditional worker’s week with a 3-0 record against three teams they could see in the postseason. They’d already routed the defending champion Cavaliers 126-91 on Monday and struck down the Thunder 121-101 on Wednesday.
“It’s three good teams in a row,” Kevin Durant told reporters in Houston. “We definitely wanted to come out and make a nice statement, and I think we did that.
“We always can get better. We can’t relax against Orlando, Miami and Charlotte, teams that can creep up on you and have been playing well lately.”
The Magic, Heat and Hornets -- all dreadful to mediocre -- are the kinds of teams that force the Warriors to compete. They don’t stir the senses like the Cavs or the Thunder or the Rockets, three teams with credentials that demand attention from a Warriors team that sometimes cruises against lesser competition.
So this week was not just about winning games. These weren’t just wins, they were emphatic statements, profound evidence that the team remodeled last summer around the addition of Durant is coming together in the heart of the season.
The defense was tight, with Cleveland shooting 35.2 percent, OKC 42.2 percent and Houston 20.0 percent from beyond the arc, which is the only place that matters for the Rockets.
The Warriors resorted to one of their signature turbocharged third quarters to separate from the Rockets. Shooting 61.9 percent and scoring 9 points off Houston turnovers, the Warriors outscored Houston 37-22 in the third, stretching a five-point halftime lead to 20 going into the fourth quarter.
The Warriors now have an NBA-best differential of plus-250 points in the third quarter this season.
“It’s just something that we put an emphasis on,” Green said. “Coming out and getting off to a good start in the second half. Not coming out flat and giving another team life or letting them go on a run and then trying to make it up. And once we go on our run, we can get rolling pretty well and make it tough on other teams.”
That was the case this week, as the Warriors topped 50 percent from the field in all three victories.
Durant scored 32 points against Houston and averaged 31 points over the last three games. Stephen Curry put in 24 points and averaged 22.7 for the week. Green, meanwhile, averaged 12.7 points, 10.7 rebounds, 7.7 assists and 3.7 blocks.
“It was our best week of the season because we’ve gotten better each time we’ve stepped on the floor this week,” Green said. “And that’s what’s most important. It’s not about blasting these three teams. It’s about getting better, and trying to reach our end goal. In order to do that, you have to get better each and every time you step on the floor.
“We did that these three games, so that’s the most important thing. That’s why it’s been a good week, not because of the margin of the wins that we had.”
The Warriors avenged yet another loss Friday night, rolling into Houston and laying a 125-108 beating on the Rockets at Toyota Center.
All five Warriors starters scored in double figures, with Kevin Durant totaling 32 points to lead the way. Stephen Curry finished with 24 points, Klay Thompson with 16, Draymond Green with 15 and Zaza Pachulia added 10.
The Warriors (37-6) suffocated Houston’s high-powered offense, which is predicated on 3-point shooting, holding the Rockets to 20 percent (7-of-35) beyond the arc. The Warriors forced 15 turnovers, off which they scored 19 points.
Backup center Clint Capela scored 22 points to lead Houston (33-13). MVP candidate James Harden was held to 17 points on 6-of-13 shooting, including 0-of-5 from 3-point distance.
Having beaten the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday, the Warriors this week evened the ledger against two elite teams. They lost to Houston on Dec. 1 in Oakland, 132-127, in double overtime that accounted for one of only three losses at Oracle Arena.
The entire starting lineup played well, but Durant proved too much for anything the Rockets threw at him.
Durant’s line: 32 points (12-of-19 shooting from the field, including 2-of-7 from deep, 6-of-7 from the line), seven assists, four rebounds, two blocks and two steals. He played 34 minutes and was plus-25 for the game.
After Houston trimmed their lead to five (64-59) with 11:39 remaining in the third quarter, the Warriors responded with a 23-8 run, punctuated by a 28-foot 3-pointer by Curry to go up 87-67 with 5:58 left in the quarter.
The Warriors led by 20 entering the fourth quarter, and the Rockets got no closer than 15 over the final 12 minutes.
Warriors: C/F David West (L thumb fracture) was listed as out.
Rockets: F Ryan Anderson (flu) was listed as questionable but upgraded to available. He was in the starting lineup, but played only nine minutes before leaving for good.
The Warriors return to action Sunday in Orlando, where they face the Magic at Amway Center. Tipoff is scheduled for noon Pacific.