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KINGSTON, R.I. (AP) — E.C. Matthews found himself in the starting lineup and responded by scoring a season-high 20 points to lead Rhode Island to its third straight win, knocking off Florida Gulf Coast in the Rams' final nonconference game, 80-60 on Wednesday night.
The win keeps Rhode Island undefeated at home. It was the first meeting between the teams.
Florida Gulf Coast held the lead late in the first half until Matthews drilled back-to-back 3-pointers, then tacked on a pair of free throws to help send the Rams into intermission with a 38-32 advantage.
Jared Terrell hit a 3-pointer with 6:25 left to push the Rhode Island lead to 20 points, 66-46.
Terrell finished with 18 points and Stanford Robinson added another 14.
Antravious Simmons had 14 points for FGC (7-8), which now has lost four straight.
Rhode Island (8-3) opens conference play Saturday when the Rams play host to George Mason.