CBC Bearcats basketball opens Thursday

Men's, women's teams open at home against the Quest Kermodes

The CBC Bearcats men's and women's basketball teams open the PacWest season on Thursday against the Quest Kermodes.

The CBC Bearcats men's and women's basketball teams open the PacWest season on Thursday against the Quest Kermodes.

After a bye on opening weekend, the CBC Bearcats men’s and women’s basketball teams hit the hardwood on Thursday to open the PacWest regular season.

The teams welcome the Quest Kermodes from Squamish, with the women tipping off at 6 p.m., and the men playing at 8 p.m.

The men are looking to improve on last season. which saw the club win just three games.

CBC will have to attempt that without star guard Kevin Davis, who has moved on to Bishop’s University in Quebec.

Key returning players for the men include Elijah Calhoun (sixth in league scoring and 10th in rebounds) and Umbori Watson (ninth in scoring and 11th in rebounds).

The team has eight rookie players, including Abbotsford players Drew Burnett (Abbotsford Christian Secondary grad) and Tamikah Otanga (Yale Secondary grad).

The women are aiming to build on a season in which they tied for the most wins ever in team history (six), and narrowly missed qualifying for the playoffs.

Overtime losses haunted the women last season, as the club lost two on the same weekend near the end of the season, which sealed their fate.

CBC will rely heavily on MEI grad Harvina Kaler, who led the team in points (eighth in league scoring) and rebounds and assists (second in the league) last season. Chilliwack’s Mandy van Delden (15th in league scoring) and Tolu Ojo from Vancouver (15th in league rebounds) will be other key players for the Bearcats.

After Quest, the teams host the Langara Falcons on Saturday. Game times are 6 p.m. for the women and 8 p.m. for the men.