HOUSTON, Jan. 24 (Ticker) -- The last time the Detroit Pistons won in Houston, Isiah Thomas was playing on the Eastern Conference All-Star team instead of coaching it.

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Clifford Robinson scored 20 points and Corliss Williamson had six of his 18 during a key second-quarter run as the Pistons snapped a nine-game road losing streak to the Rockets with a 98-74 victory.

Detroit had not won in Houston since January 2, 1992, when Thomas was still playing point guard for the Pistons. Thomas, an 11-time All-Star who is now coach of the Indiana Pacers, will be coaching the Eastern Conference for the first time this season.

Robinson and Williamson combined to make 16-of-28 shots for Detroit, which scored 46 points in the paint and committed only five turnovers.

The Pistons took the lead for good with a 12-0 run midway through the second quarter. Williamson scored six points during the burst and Robinson capped it with a running hook shot to give Detroit a 43-35 edge with 97 seconds to go.

"I didn't have to force anything tonight," said Williamson, who made 9-of-14 shots. "I try to get position and (my teammates) found me. We wanted to slow the pace, take them out of their rhythm."

The Pistons had a 64-56 edge with 2:37 left in the third quarter before Chauncey Billups, who finished 11 points, made 1-of-2 free throws and a 3-pointer to spark a 10-0 run.

All-Star center Ben Wallace made a layup, Mehmet Okur made two free throws and Richard Hamilton capped the third quarter with a jumper to give Detroit a 74-56 lead entering the fourth.

Hamilton finished with 18 points and Wallace collected nine points, 18 rebounds, three steals and three blocks as the Pistons improved to a conference-best 13-9 on the road.

"Ben Wallace was tremendous," Detroit coach Rick Carlisle said. "He was out of this world. Ben makes everybody work for everything they get. We have tough-minded guys who relish the challenge of playing on the road."

Wallace severely outplayed rookie Yao Ming, who will be starting at center for the Western Conference in the All-Star Game. Yao scored only four points on 1-of-4 shooting and grabbed six rebounds in just 23 minutes.

"I had a chance to play against (Yao) this summer," Wallace said. "If he catches the ball deep he can score every time. I tried to push him off the block."

"The opponent's rebounding ability was too strong," Yao said. "It was frustrating. They have a very strong center. I thought it would have been good if we had been able to get them to collapse their defense inside and gotten the outside guys some looks."

Steve Francis was limited to 16 points and James Posey had 12 and 12 rebounds for the Rockets, who have lost three straight following a season-high four-game winning streak.

"Their depth and our lack of depth put us in a real tough position," Houston coach Rudy Tomjanovich said. "We hung in there for a while. We missed everything inside. Our execution was no good. We had some pretty good shots, we just couldn't finish them."

Cuttino Mobley had 14 points on 5-of-17 shooting for Houston, which shot just 39 percent (28-of-72) from the floor , including 1-of-6 from 3-point range.

"A lot of the shots that I was getting weren't going down tonight," he said. "I think we need to get in our offense a little faster and be more efficient in it, and create more. Right now we need to be consistent on the offensive end."