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Pili scores a season-high 31, No. 11 Utah beats Saint Joseph's

Chris Gardner / Getty Images Sport / Getty

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Alissa Pili scored a season-high 31 points to reach 20-plus for the fifth straight game and No. 11 Utah used a big fourth quarter to beat Saint Joseph's 74-48 on Thursday.

Pili took over in the first five minutes of the fourth, making all five of her field-goal attempts during a personal 14-2 run for a 65-43 lead. She finished 12 of 17 from the field and grabbed seven rebounds for Utah (8-1). Pili came up just short of tying her career high of 33 points, set in the NCAA Tournament last season.

Kennady McQueen scored 11 of Utah’s opening 27 points and didn't score again. Saint Joseph’s was held to six points in the first quarter and didn’t reach 11 points until Emma Boslet scored with 5:47 left in the second quarter. The Hawks started making just 3 of 19 shots.

Talya Brugler scored 16 points for Saint Joseph’s (8-1), which was attempting to start 9-0 for a second straight season. The Hawks are 7-33 all-time against ranked teams under head coach Cindy Griffin.

Saint Joseph’s scored 20 points in the second quarter, capped by Chloe Welch’s runner in the lane just before the halftime buzzer, to get within 38-26 at the break. The Hawks improved to shoot 35% by halftime.

Utah announced on Monday that junior guard Gianna Kneepkens would miss the remainder of the season after suffering an injury to her right foot that will require surgery. Kneepkens’ injury occurred in an 87-68 win over BYU last Saturday. She was averaging 17.8 points per game while shooting 79.8% from the field.

Utah will take on No. 1 South Carolina in the Basketball Hall of Fame Showcase on Sunday at the Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Connecticut.

Saint Joseph's hosts Villanova on Saturday.

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