Cascades women’s hoopsters to host NCAA opponents

The University of the Fraser Valley women's basketball team begins its preseason with a pair of exhibition games against NCAA foes next week

The University of the Fraser Valley women’s basketball team begins its preseason preparations with a pair of exhibition games against NCAA foes next week.

The Cascades host the Ball State Cardinals on Monday at noon, and the Schreiner University Mountaineers on Tuesday at 7 p.m. at the Envision Athletic Centre.

The Cardinals, who hail from Muncie, Ind., play in the NCAA Div. 1 Mid-American Conference. Ball State made some noise in the NCAA Tournament in 2009, upsetting Tennessee in the first round. They’re coming off a 4-12 season in MAC play, but return their top two scorers in guard Brittany Carter and forward Jazmin Hitchens.

The Mountaineers, based in Richardson, Tex., are an NCAA Div. III team which plays in the American Southwest Conference. Players to watch include forward Olivia Swarner, an honourable mention all-conference player last season, and guard Karisa Cantu, the reigning ASC West Division freshman of the year. Schreiner will be bringing an experienced squad to Abbotsford, having lost just one senior to graduation from its 2011-12 roster.