run the clock down

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run the clock down

In sports, to protect a lead by using up as much possible time that remains in a game or match without giving the opposing team a chance to score, generally by maintaining a passive or defensive strategy. With just a narrow two-point lead, the home team has started to run the clock down to hold on for a win. It seems like a risky strategy, Jim. There's a lot of game time left for them to start running the clock down already.
See also: clock, down, run
References in periodicals archive ?
Detroit ran the clock down on the next possession, and Smith sank his only 3-point attempt of the game, from the right corner with 14 seconds to play.
A couple of turnovers on both sides ran the clock down to 2.
Some excellent work in the dying stages from Danny Hughes and Toby Jones ran the clock down in the opposition's corner and ensured the three points went to Llandudno.
Even as the game started to peter out, United played intelligently and ran the clock down brilliantly to protect the result.
Thankfully we had the early goal and we ran the clock down well.
The game restarted with a minute left and Underbank successfully defused the short kick-off and ran the clock down to the referee's final whistle.
Jack, however, calmly ran the clock down and hit the shot to beat his former team as the Nets won their first game at home since Feb.
The Bucks then ran the clock down and Knight buried a jumper over Brandon Bass from the top left.
After that Billingham seemed content to play possession hockey and ran the clock down to secure one of their biggest derby wins in recent times.
Defensively we were so sound and we ran the clock down really well at the end.
David exploited the mismatch with Akmad, ran the clock down to the last five seconds and hit the basket after a shoulder fake that left Akmad down on the court.
In the third Test Australia were leading by a point in the final minutes and ran the clock down efficiently by keeping the ball and protecting possession.
It was then a case of Williams taking a pivotal controlling role as Wales ran the clock down during a nerve-jangling final few minutes.
That graft was duly provided by a dogged Newcastle pack, and you could almost smell the desperation as they picked, drove, picked, drove and then picked again - replacement hooker Michael Mayhew providing much of the late ballast as they ran the clock down, second by second.