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George, Pacers topple Mavericks 103-78

Friday - 3/29/2013, 12:31am  ET

Dallas Mavericks forward Vince Carter, right, takes a shot against Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert (55) during the first half of an NBA basketball game in Dallas on Thursday, March 28, 2013. (AP Photo/Mike Fuentes)

DAVID JIMENEZ
Associated Press

DALLAS (AP) -- Paul George and Indiana Pacers went on an offensive surge in the third quarter to sink the Dallas Mavericks.

However, all Pacers coach Frank Vogel could talk about was his top-ranked defense.

George had 24 points and eight rebounds and the Pacers broke open a close game in the third quarter to beat the Mavericks 103-78 on Thursday night.

With the game tied at half, the Pacers outscored the Mavericks 34-17 in the third. George had eight points in a 20-5 run to open the second half.

Vogel said his team's defense allowed Indiana to pull away in the second half.

"Our defensive effort keeps getting better and better," Vogel said. "I'm very impressed with how dialed in our guys are and how disciplined they're playing on the defensive end."

The Central Division-leading Pacers won their fourth straight and have a half-game lead for the second-best record in the Eastern Conference.

Indiana is 2-0 on a four-game Western Conference trip. The Pacers beat the Houston Rockets 100-91 on Wednesday night.

"It was great win," George said. "For us to come out and match their same intensity was huge, especially on their floor."

Dirk Nowitzki scored 21 points for Dallas, which remained 1
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