Utah sets school record for 3s in 108-48 win over South Carolina State

SALT LAKE CITY -- — Issy Palmer scored 21 points, hitting seven 3-pointers and Gianna Kneepkins added 16 points to help No. 5 Utah to a 108-48 rout of South Carolina State on Thursday night.

Kneepkins hit four of Utah’s school record 21 3-pointers. The Utes were 21-of-53 from behind the arc and 62% of their field goal attempts came from the perimeter.

“They played zone for 40 minutes and our players are programmed to shoot the three if they’re open,” Utah coach Lynne Roberts said. “We’re going to take them. If that’s the shots we’re given, we’re going to take them.”

Utah also dominated on the glass with a 63-23 advantage. Alissa Pili chipped in 18 points and 10 rebounds.

Cassandra Colon led South Carolina State with 12 points. Taniya McGown chipped in 10 points for the Bulldogs.

Utah made seven of its 3-pointers in the first quarter and scored 15 of the first 16 points to blow the game open early. Kneepkins sparked the run hitting her first two 3-pointers. The Utes scored five consecutive baskets later in the period to extend their lead to 33-7. Reese Ross capped the 12-0 run with a fastbreak layup.

Utah had an assist on each of its 11 first-quarter baskets. Four different players finished with at least five assists by the end of the game.

“No one took poor shots in that game,” Palmer said. “I don’t think you saw a bad contested shot. They were all wide open. If it’s open and we’re capable – and we put the work in – (we) let it fly.”

The Utes led by as many as 60 points after halftime. It marked the second consecutive game where they held an opponent under 50 points. South Carolina State never scored more than 14 points in any quarter while trailing wire-to-wire.

Utah’s first two victories have been decided by an average margin of 59.5 points.

“We weren’t perfect tonight defensively,” Roberts said. “There were quite a few mistakes. But, good grief, it’s the second game. There should be. It would be weird if there wasn’t. But we are farther ahead than we were a year ago for sure.”


South Carolina State: The Bulldogs struggled to generate consistent offense in their season opener. They totaled only eight baskets before halftime and trailed by double digits almost the entire game.

Utah: The high-powered Ute offense carved up South Carolina from the perimeter and at the rim. Utah had a 30-4 advantage in offensive rebounds and outscored the Bulldogs 28-3 in second chance points.


South Carolina State is at UNC-Greensboro on Saturday.

Utah is at Baylor on Tuesday.


AP women’s college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-womens-college-basketball-poll and https://apnews.com/hub/womens-college-basketball