HOUSTON -- Five players were in double-figures Wednesday night for Rice with Tamir Jackson leading the way, recording a double-double by scoring 12 points and pulling 15 rebounds in a 75-63 victory over St. Edward's.
Max Guercy led Rice (1-1) with 17 points, Seth Gearhart had 15, and Keith Washington and Ross Wilson each had 10. The key to victory for the Owles came at the free-throw line, making 30 of 39 while St. Edward's shot only 10, making six.
Despite their disadvantage at the line, the Hilltoppers (3-2) made it a 4-point game when Shimeek Johnson hit a 3-pointer with 8:34 remaining, making it 50-46, but Rice went on an 11-3 run over the next three minutes capped off by Gearhart's lay-in to make it 61-49 and the Owls never looked back. The Owls hit 10 of 12 free throws in the final 2:17 to seal the deal.
Forward Kennedy Meeks, who has averaged 9.4 points and 6.5 rebounds at North Carolina, has pulled out of the NBA draft and will return to the Tar Heels.
Cal big man Ivan Rabb could have been selected in the top 10 of the NBA draft. Instead, he's returning to Berkeley to make himself, and the Golden Bears, stronger.
Devin Williams' decision last month to sign with an agent and enter the NBA draft has left West Virginia in a tough spot.
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