RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) Kiara Leslie had 16 points and eight rebounds, and No. 8 North Carolina State beat Pittsburgh 63-34 on Thursday night to improve to 16-0.
Leslie has been more assertive since leading scorer Grace Hunter's season ended with a knee injury against Duke last week. In the first game without Hunter on Sunday at Boston College, Leslie scored 31 points and shot 13 for 15 from the field for the Wolfpack (3-0 Atlantic Coast Conference).
Against Pitt, Leslie led the Wolfpack in scoring, assists (five) and steals (three). The senior guard scored 14 points in the first half while N.C. State built a 35-16 halftime lead. DD Rogers added 10 points and eight rebounds.
Kauai Bradley led Pitt (9-2, 0-2) with eight points. The Panthers shot just 7 for 40 (17.5 percent) from the field in the first three quarters and missed 10 of their first 11 3-point attempts.
N.C. State ran off nine straight points to stretch its advantage to 21 just before halftime. Leslie passed to Rogers for a layup to start the run, and added a steal and a fast-break layup as the Wolfpack overcame a cold-shooting (5 for 14) first quarter to take a comfortable lead.
Pittsburgh: After opening ACC play with consecutive losses on the road to top-10 opponents N.C. State and Notre Dame, the Panthers get to play four in a row at home. They shot 26.6 percent (against Notre Dame) and 22.2 percent from the field in their last two games.
N.C. State: The Wolfpack are cruising, having won by at least 11 points in 14 of 16 games. Playing good defense without fouling has been a staple for N.C. State, which entered Thursday's game ranked fourth in the nation in fewest fouls per game and didn't commit a foul in the first 11 minutes.
Pittsburgh: Plays host to Boston College on Sunday.
N.C. State: Visits Virginia on Sunday.
More AP college basketball: https://apnews.com/Collegebasketball and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25