NEW ORLEANS — Dirk Nowitzki scored 11 of his 21 points in the fourth quarter and the Dallas Mavericks beat the New Orleans Pelicans 100-97 Wednesday night.

NEW ORLEANS — Dirk Nowitzki scored 11 of his 21 points in the fourth quarter and the Dallas Mavericks beat the New Orleans Pelicans 100-97 Wednesday night.


Nowitzki gave Dallas the lead with a free throw to make the score 98-97 with 32.3 seconds left. He then got a piece of Eric Gordon’s driving floater, grabbed the rebound and hit two more free throws with 8 seconds left.


The Pelicans’ Ryan Anderson missed an open 3-pointer that would have tied it with 2 seconds left.


Reserve Vince Carter had 15 points for Dallas and Monta Ellis added 14 points.


Jrue Holiday had a season-high 26 points for the Pelicans, who played without injured forward Anthony Davis for the second consecutive game. Al-Farouq Aminu had a career-high 21 rebounds and a season-high 16 points. Anderson added 18 points and 13 rebounds.


The Pelicans, who outscored opponents by 25 points in the second half while going 3-0 on their recently concluded road trip, tried to pull away in the third quarter with an 8-0 run to go up 73-65 late in the quarter. But the Mavericks answered with a 10-2 spurt, getting 3-pointers from Jae Crowder and Carter.


Dallas stayed hot at the start of the fourth. Nowitzki scored on a turnaround to give the Mavericks a 79-77 lead, converted a 3-point play on a tough shot and hit a free throw after the Pelicans were called for a defensive 3-second violation as Dallas went ahead 83-77.


That lead didn’t last long. Holiday sank a 3-pointer to tie the score at 86 with 6:49 left.


Dallas went back up 91-86 on Carter’s basket and a wide open 3-pointer from Jose Calderon, but the Pelicans responded with a field goal by Holiday, a drive by Aminu and two free throws from Anderson to go ahead 92-91.


Nowitzki hit a face-up midrange shot to give Dallas a 97-94 lead before Holiday sank a long 3-pointer to tie the score at 97, setting up Nowitzki’s finish.


Without Davis, New Orleans could not extend its winning streak to four games for the first time since Jan. 5-11 of 2013. Davis sustained a non-displaced fracture of fifth metacarpal when he hit his hand on the rim in the first quarter of a 103-99 win against the New York Knicks on Sunday. New Orleans announced on Tuesday that Davis would be out four-to-six weeks. He was averaging 18.8 points and 10.2 rebounds.


In Davis’ absence, Aminu was more aggressive than usual. Averaging 5.5 points and 5.5 rebounds, he had a double-double by halftime (10 points, 11 rebounds) of his first in a full game this season. He finished the half with a soaring dunk off a nice pass from Holiday and a reverse layup around Nowitzki.


The first half was close all the way. The Pelicans’ largest run was 6-0, and the Mavericks’ biggest spurt was 5-0.


Neither team led by double digits at any time in the game.