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Suns bench breaks out to even series with Lakers

PHOENIX - The Phoenix bench finally delivered as advertised, and it could hardly have come at a better time.

Channing Frye broke out of a horrendous shooting slump by making four three-pointers for 14 points, and the Suns pulled away in the fourth quarter for the second game in a row to beat the Los Angeles Lakers, 115-106, last night and tie the Western Conference finals at two games apiece.

A series that looked like a Lakers' breeze a week ago is all even heading to Game 5 Thursday night in Los Angeles.

The Suns reserves, considered an advantage entering the series but largely ineffective through three games, outscored their Lakers counterparts 54-20. Leandro Barbosa scored 14 and shot 6-for-8, and Jared Dudley added 11 points.

Amar'e Stoudemire led Phoenix with 21 points. Steve Nash, playing with a broken nose, had 15 points and eight assists.

Kobe Bryant had 38 points and 10 assists as the defending NBA champions fought back to lead briefly early in the fourth before the Suns backups stole the show.

Phoenix coach Alvin Gentry kept all five reserves in the game for almost the first nine minutes of the final quarter, and they produced an 18-3 run, and the Lakers never recovered.

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