- Associated Press - Saturday, January 31, 2015

THIBODAUX, La. (AP) - Kyle Hittle scored 16 points to lead four players in double-figures as Incarnate Word led wire-to-wire to notch its third straight win, defeating Nicholls State 69-58 on Saturday

Incarnate Word (10-9, 5-3 Southland) is climbing into a cluster of teams just behind the conference leaders.

Jontrell Walker and Denzel Livingston scored 15 each for the Cardinals, Livingston all in the first half, and Mitchell Badillo added 11.

Sam McBeath led Nicholls (5-13, 2-6) with 21 points and nine rebounds. Marquis Nelson added a career-high 10 points, draining a jumper that pulled the Colonels to 59-54 with two minutes left.

The Cardinals made 8 of 8 at the foul line, and Hittle added a layup, to outscore Nicholls 10-4 to the end. Incarnate Word made 20 of 37 shots from the field (54 percent), bettering 50 percent for the eighth time.

Still, Nicholls held them to 16 points under their average.

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