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Phillips scores 25 as No. 22 Xavier opens season with convincing win

CINCINNATI -- Ta'Shia Phillips scored 25 points on Friday, and No. 22 Xavier used its front line to full advantage while pulling away to a 79-49 victory over Robert Morris in the opening round of the Women's National Invitation Tournament.

Phillips scored 18 in the first half, when Xavier (1-0) opened a double-digit lead. The 6-foot-6 center made 8-of-11 from the field in the half and 11-of-15 overall.

Robert Morris (0-1), which was picked to win the Northeast Conference, was led by Monet Jackson's 19 points.

Xavier opened the season in the national rankings for the first time in school history. Junior guard Amber Harris, who set a school record for rebounds last season, is sidelined until February with a knee injury, forcing Phillips to carry more of the load. She led the Musketeers with 12 rebounds.