March 15, 2018 / 1:46 AM / 6 months ago

Simmons, Augustin lead Magic past Bucks

Jonathon Simmons established career highs of 35 points and seven 3-pointers to lead the Orlando Magic to a 126-117 victory over the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday at Amway Center in Orlando, Fla.

D.J. Augustin recorded season bests of 32 points and six 3-pointers, as the Magic tied their season high of 18 3-pointers (in 34 attempts) one night after scoring a season-worst 72 points in a loss to the San Antonio Spurs. Nikola Vucevic contributed 22 points, nine rebounds, nine assists and four steals as Orlando won for just the third time in 15 games.

Giannis Antetokounmpo recorded 38 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists for the Bucks, who lost for the seventh time in the past 10 games. Khris Middleton scored 22 points, Eric Bledsoe added 20 and Jabari Parker scored 14.

Milwaukee shot 50 percent from the field and hit 10 of 24 from behind the arc while losing for the 21st time in its last 24 visits to Orlando.

The Magic shot 50.6 percent from the field and were 20-for-23 from the free-throw line in a remarkable 24-hour turnaround.

“Everybody stepped up tonight and we played the right way,” Augustin said in a postgame interview on Fox Sports Florida. “We shared the ball and played together on defense and offense. We looked pretty good tonight.”

Orlando led 66-56 after Simmons buried a 3-pointer in the opening minute of the third quarter. The Magic’s lead was seven just prior to the midway point before the Bucks rattled off 10 straight points to take an 80-77 advantage with 3:57 remaining.

But Milwaukee didn’t score again during the quarter, and the Magic responded with 14 straight points. Jonathan Isaac drained a 3-pointer with 38.7 seconds left as Orlando carried a 91-80 lead into the final stanza.

Parker slammed home a dunk 27 seconds into the fourth quarter to end the Bucks’ drought. But by the middle of the quarter, Milwaukee was down 108-92 before scoring seven straight points to trail by nine with 4:38 remaining.

Vucevic’s putback with 1:32 left elevated Orlando’s lead to 118-104 before Milwaukee went on a flurry and pulled within seven on Antetokounmpo’s 3-pointer with 25.7 seconds left. Simmons made two free throws with 24.9 seconds left to establish a new career high, and the Magic closed it out for coach Frank Vogel’s 300th career victory.

Simmons was 5-of-6 from 3-point range in the first half as part of a personal 21-point explosion to help the Magic hold a 61-52 halftime lead. Augustin had 19 points in the half.

—Field Level Media

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