One night after fighting off Minnesota to snap a four-game losing streak, the Wizards almost ran out of gas down the stretch against the Cavaliers.
Washington led by 21 points to start the fourth quarter and that lead was reduced to four when Kyrie Irving made a jumper with 2:26 to go.
Beal then hit a jump shot 18 seconds later and he also made two of the eight consecutive foul shots the Wizards used to protect their lead.
Beal scored 26 points in addition to seven rebounds and eight assists. Nene added 24 points and eight rebounds for the Wizards, while John Wall had 15 points and nine assists.
Irving hit 90-of-14 shots from the field and had 28 points. It was Cleveland's fourth loss in five games.