NEW YORK -- Tyrese Martin had career highs of 24 points and 16 rebounds and Jacob Toppin made two free throws with 6 seconds remaining to lift Rhode Island to a 76-75 victory over Fordham on Wednesday night.
Martin sank 10 of 18 shots from the floor, including 3 of 7 from 3-point range, for Rhode Island's Rams. Fatts Russell pitched in with 15 points and four assists, while freshman Mekhi Long hit three 3-pointers, scoring 13 off the bench.
Rhode Island (20-7, 12-3 Atlantic 10 Conference) led 41-35 at halftime and stretched its advantage to 59-47 on Martin's layup with 12:59 left to play. But Fordham's Rams battled back and grabbed a 75-74 lead at the 1:08 mark on a 3-pointer by Erten Gazi. Rhode Island's Antwan Walker missed a 3, but Toppin snared the offensive rebound and was fouled by Chris Austin. After Toppin sank both free throws Toppin blocked Josh Colon's layup at the other end to preserve the victory.
Rhode Island shot 44% from the floor, 32% from beyond the arc (9 of 28) and made 13 of 20 free throws. Fordham shot 45% overall, 44% from distance (12 of 27) and made 9 of 14 foul shots.
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