HOUSTON (AP) Braxton Ogbueze scored 30 points, a first for the junior, and drained eight 3-pointers - the point total and the treys both career highs - and Charlotte defeated Rice 88-75 on Thursday night.
Four of Ogbueze's 3-pointers came in the second half as Charlotte battled Rice for the lead.
Ogbueze hit two 3-pointers and a jumper on three consecutive possessions early in the second half as the 49ers battled with Rice. It was two more Ogbueze 3s, this time bracketing a Curran Scott basket, that finally opened some breathing room at 58-52. And for emphasis, Anthony Vanhook threw down a dunk on a feed from Ogbueze with 12 minutes to play as the lead grew to 60-52 and Charlotte (13-17, 9-8 Conference USA) held on from there.
Freshman Marcus Evans scored 27 points to lead Rice (12-18, 7-10). The game saw 10 lead changes and four ties.