Pac-12 women’s basketball report: Stanford beats Utah in Salt Lake City showdown

The USC Trojans are preparing to host No. 2 and unbeaten UCLA on Sunday in the Galen Center. Meanwhile, the Pac-12 provided a compelling slate of Friday night games in women’s college basketball’s toughest conference.

The highlight came in Salt Lake City, where Stanford — not predicted to win the Pac-12 before the season began — remained unbeaten in the conference with a 66-64 win at Utah. Stanford joins Colorado and UCLA as one of the three unbeaten teams in the Pac-12, heading into a Sunday clash with Colorado in Boulder.

Stanford’s Kiki Iriafen had a career game against Utah, scoring 25 points and pulling down 16 rebounds in a dynamic display. Stanford needed every last point and board on a night when star Cameron Brink scored only nine points.

Stanford’s defense against Utah superstar Alissa Pili was the difference. The Cardinal limited Pili to 5-of-18 shooting from the field. Utah hit just 39 percent of its shots and committed 13 turnovers. The Utes are buried in the Pac-12 standings and are facing a massive uphill climb in the battle for the Pac-12 title. They can’t afford to lose any more ground the rest of the way, given how strong UCLA, Colorado and Stanford look right now.

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Story originally appeared on Trojans Wire