Victor Wembanyama, Spurs wallop hapless Hornets

Victor Wembanyama racked up 26 points and 11 rebounds in 20 minutes of court time as the San Antonio Spurs rocked the visiting Charlotte Hornets 135-99 on Friday.

The Spurs won consecutive games for just the second time this season, with the other occurrence a two-game sweep at Phoenix on Oct. 31 and Nov. 2. San Antonio notched its biggest winning margin of the year after leading by 21 points at halftime and by 32 early in the third quarter.

Doug McDermott added 14 points for San Antonio, with Jeremy Sochan scoring 13, Devin Vassell hitting for 12, Cedi Osman ringing up 11 and Keldon Johnson hitting for 10 points. The contest was the first of a home back-to-back for the Spurs, who host the Chicago Bulls on Saturday.

LaMelo Ball, playing his first game is since spraining his right ankle on Nov. 26, led the Hornets with 28 points and five steals. Terry Rozier added 16 points, Miles Bridges had 14 and Nick Richards and Bryce McGowens scored 12 apiece for Charlotte, which has lost four straight games and 15 of its past 16.

Rookie Brandon Miller was forced from the game in the second quarter when he hit the back of his head on the court when being fouled on a dunk.

The Spurs led for all but the first seconds of the game, pulling away to a 25-15 advantage on Malaki Branham’s layup at the 1:41 mark of the first quarter. Ball brought Charlotte back to within 28-22 by scoring the Hornets’ final four points of the period as part of his 11-point quarter.

Two 3-pointers by McDermott, the second with 4:58 to play in the second quarter, capped an 8-0 run for the Spurs that expanded their advantage to 53-35. Later in the period, McDermott canned two more 3-pointers before Sochan’s turnaround jumper with 4.8 seconds remaining granted San Antonio a 66-45 lead at the break.

McDermott’s 12 points in the half, all on 3-pointers in the second quarter, paced San Antonio. Wembanyama had 11 and Vassell 10 for the Spurs.

Ball’s 16 points before halftime led all scorers, and Rozier had 10 for the Hornets. Charlotte shot just 28 percent from the floor in the half and finished the game at 36 percent.

San Antonio shot 51.7 percent from the field for the night.