Shilpa Khanna of the KPU Eagles drives to the hoop during a PACWEST preseason game against the Camosun Chargers. KPU won 65-54.

Shilpa Khanna of the KPU Eagles drives to the hoop during a PACWEST preseason game against the Camosun Chargers. KPU won 65-54.

KPU tops Camosun in preseason play

Samantha Kelleigh nets 20 points for Eagles in PACWEST exhibition game

A second-quarter surge erased an early deficit and helped lift the KPU (Kwantlen Polytechnic University) Eagles women’s basketball team to a 65-54 victory over the Camosun College Chargers in a preseason game Saturday afternoon.

Kwantlen trailed the PACWEST (Pacific Northwest Conference) clash 14-7 after one quarter, but rallied to tie the contest 29-29 by halftime. The Eagles went up 46-40 at three-quarter time and never looked back.

Second-year point guard Samantha Kelleigh was KPU’s leading scorer with 20 points. Fifth-year centre Samantha McPhail added 13 points while second-year players Harjot Ladher and Shilpa Khanna, both of Surrey, scored eight each.

“We shot the ball well and established a strong inside presence in the second half,” said KPU head coach Dan Nayebzadeh, “We have to make sure we bring consistency throughout the game and play for 40 minutes, but overall, I was pleased with our team effort.”

KPU will be at the Capilano University Blues tournament this weekend in North Vancouver.

The KPU men’s team took to the floor for their first of four preseason games, and faced a difficult test in Surrey Friday night.

The Eagles tipped off against the University of Fraser Valley (UFV) Cascades at Tamanawis Secondary, falling 111-68.

“We wanted to give UFV a good game and show that we could compete at this level,” said head coach Vladimir Nikic. We are a young team, but as long as we play together we are going to do great things.”

KPU begins their PACWEST schedule at the end of the month, when the Cascades will be playing in Canadian Interuniversity Sports (CIS). Sharing the court with opposition from a higher level didn’t intimidate the Eagles.

They were tied 28-28 after one quarter, but UFV surged ahead in the second period for a 62-45 lead at half-time. The Cascades built the lead to 30 points in the third quarter.

Jaiten Rana, a first-year guard from Devliew Seco