HOUSTON (AP) — Tropical Storm Nicholas is strengthening just off the Gulf Coast and could blow ashore in Texas as a hurricane as it brings heavy rain and floods to coastal areas from Mexico to storm-battered Louisiana. Forecasters at the National Hurricane Center in Miami say top sustained winds reached 60 mph. It was traveling north-northwest at 5 mph on a forecast track to pass near the South Texas coast later Monday, then move onshore along the coast of south or central Texas by Monday evening. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott says the state has placed rescue teams and resources in the Houston area and along the Texas Gulf Coast. Some schools in the Houston and Galveston areas are closed because of the storm.