CLEVELAND, Feb. 5 (Ticker) -- Not surprisingly, the Cleveland Cavaliers made their 10th victory of the season a lot harder than it had to be.

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Ricky Davis scored 21 points and Zydrunas Ilgauskas added 20 as the Cavaliers let a 14-point fourth-quarter lead dwindle to one before edging the lackluster Houston Rockets, 105-102, to become the final team to reach double digits in victories.

The Rockets used a 17-8 run to get back in the game in the final five minutes, closing within 103-102 on a free throw by James Posey with 37.8 seconds left.

Houston had a chance to take the lead, but Steve Francis' pass was intercepted with 9.8 seconds left by Milt Palacio, who promptly was fouled and made both free throws. With two seconds left, Houston's Cuttino Mobley missed an off-balance 3-pointer and Cleveland's four-game losing streak was over.

"We got a little out of sync, but nevertheless, we made some big defensive efforts," Cavaliers coach Keith Smart said. "Milt made a great steal. All-around, guys made plays defensively that we had to make."

Afterward, Houston coach Rudy Tomjanovich was puzzled and dejected.

"What a negative feeling it is to have that. ... (To be) prepared and we still wound up not getting it done. That's a characteristic that if I had a scalpel, I would dig that thing out," Tomjanovich said.

Maurice Taylor scored a season-high 30 points and Mobley contributed 24 as the Rockets dropped to 7-15 away from home with their second straight road loss.

Davis also had 10 assists and six rebounds and Palacio chipped in a season-best 16 points for the Cavs, who shot 45.5 percent (40-of-88) from the field and hit 21-of-24 free throws.

For 3 1/2 quarters, it was tough to tell which team was the worst in the NBA. Ilgauskas, an All-Star reserve, dominated rookie center Yao Ming, and if not for a 15-point second quarter by Taylor, Cleveland's halftime advantage would have been bigger than 54-45.

"I knew it was going to be a hard game for me since (Yao) is so tall and he has such a good shot range. He's a pretty good player, so I got pumped up," said Ilgauskas, who did much of his damage from the perimeter, where Yao was reluctant to follow.

Mobley sank a basket to open the third quarter, but the Cavs responded with a 10-5 spurt and maintained a double-digit lead throug most of the period.

After Cleveland matched its biggest bulge at 88-74 on a short jumper by Carlos Boozer with 10:07 remaining, the Rockets began to show interest.

Mobley and Taylor each scored 10 points and Houston closed within 103-101 on Taylor's layup with a minute left. Ilgauskas missed a jumper and Posey was fouled driving to the hoop, but the 82.5 percent foul shooter made just 1-of-2.

After another miss by Ilgauskas, the Rockets took off in transition, but Francis' long pass for Yao was too short and easily picked by Palacio.

"No disrespect to Cleveland, but at the end, they gave it to us," Taylor said. "We've got to learn how to finish these games. It takes too much energy to come back and get within reach and not finish it off.

"You can't have turnovers like we had at the end of the game, they killed us."

Francis scored 10 of his 16 points in the first quarter and fellow All-Star Yao added 14 on 4-of-8 shooting. Francis also had six assists and six turnovers. He leads the league with 4.15 turnovers per game.

"Physically, I know guys were kind of tired," said Francis, the Western Conference's starting All-Star point guard. "Mentally, we really didn't focus tonight on anything. I can't even begin to think how bad we played."