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Hittle goes off for 31 as Incarnate Word tops Rice, 82-76

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HOUSTON (AP) Kyle Hittle knocked down a season-high six 3-pointers and scored a season-high 31 points as Incarnate Word held off Rice, 82-76, Tuesday night to close out the nonconference portion of its schedule.

Rice's Egor Koulechov took a feed from Max Guercy and turned it into a layup to tie the score at 20-20, then gave the Owls the lead on a 3-pointer. Bishop Mency made it a five-point lead on a layup with 8:40 left in the first half, but it was gone a minute later after Incarnate Word got a layup from Hittle and a trey from Mitchell Badillo.

Amir Smith pulled Rice (5-8) even with 6:19 left in the half, but Hittle put Incarnate Word in front for good with a 3-pointer and the Cardinals held the lead the rest of the way.

Shawn Johnson added 16 points for Incarnate Word.

Koulechov finished with 19 points for Rice.