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Utah Jazz lead Denver Nuggets at halftime in late-night matchup

Published: Friday, March 23 2012 10:14 p.m. MDT

Denver Nuggets guard Ty Lawson, center, drives between Utah Jazz guard Devin Harris (5) center Al Jefferson (25) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Friday, March 23, 2012, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Jim Urquhart) (Jim Urquhart, ASSOCIATED PRESS) Denver Nuggets guard Ty Lawson, center, drives between Utah Jazz guard Devin Harris (5) center Al Jefferson (25) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Friday, March 23, 2012, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Jim Urquhart) (Jim Urquhart, ASSOCIATED PRESS)

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Jazz, which came into Friday night's game against Denver with a five-game winning streak, used a 22-10 run in the final 6 1/2 minutes of the second quarter to grab a 63-55 halftime lead over the Nuggets at EnergySolutions Arena.

Al Jefferson scored 13 first-half points for Utah (25-22), while Devin Harris had 10 with four assists. C.J. Miles added nine points, Derrick Favors eight, Alec Burks seven and Gordon Hayward and foul-plagued Paul Millsap chipped in with six points apiece for the Jazz, who shot a blistering 61.5 percent from the field in the first half.

Hayward and Favors each had five rebounds in the first half for Utah, which trailed 45-41 with 6:46 to go before halftime. Miles, Jefferson and Harris fueled Utah's late first-half run, as Miles hit an 18-foot jumper, drove for a dunk and hit a pair of free throws; Jefferson had a couple of slams and a short jumper, and Harris hit a pair of 3-pointers, both of them in the last 1:47 of the half.

Denver Nuggets guard Ty Lawson (3) knocks down Utah Jazz guard Devin Harris (5) on a drive during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Friday, March 23, 2012, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Jim Urquhart) (Jim Urquhart, AP) Denver Nuggets guard Ty Lawson (3) knocks down Utah Jazz guard Devin Harris (5) on a drive during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Friday, March 23, 2012, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Jim Urquhart) (Jim Urquhart, AP)

The Jazz led by as many as 11 points, 63-52, late in the first half before former University of Utah star Andre Miller nailed a 3-pointer with 38.6 seconds left to bring the Nuggets back within eight at halftime.

Aaron Alfalo scored 12 first-half points, while reserve JaVale McGee had 10 and Al Harrington had nine more off the bench for the Nuggets (26-21), who entered Friday's contest one game ahead of Utah in the Western Conference playoff race.

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