Exhibition games on tap this week

Senior Kim Beeston returns as the team's assists leader. (Photo by Bella Torgenson/BYU Photo)

In preparation for the 2013-14 women’s basketball season, the Cougar women will play two exhibition games this week.

BYU hosts Colorado Mesa University on Friday, Nov. 1 at 7 p.m. and in-state foe Westminster College Saturday, Nov. 2 in a 3 p.m. tipoff. Both contests are free to the public and will be heard live on BYU Radio.

The Cougar women return nine letterwinners and two starters from a team that compiled a 23-11 record, finished tied for third in the West Coast Conference and competed for the second straight year in the postseason WNIT.

Senior Jennifer Hamson is one of the two returning starters. The 6-foot-7 center averaged 11.2 points and grabbed a team-best 8.8 boards per game. Also back for her final college season is senior guard Kim Beeston. The 5-foot-11 guard averaged 10.5 points and enters the year as the team’s assists leader. She concluded last season ranked 32nd nationally in 3-point field goal percentage.

Back from injuries are sophomore guard Lexi Eaton and junior guard Stephanie Rovetti. Four additional letterwinners bring a lot of playing time and depth to this year’s team. Morgan Bailey and Ashley Garfield played in every game last season. Xojian Harry averaged 15 minutes of playing time while Kylie Maeda came off the bench to relieve Cougar standout Haley Steed at the point guard spot.

Three redshirt freshmen also look to contribute this season. Utahn’s Micaelee Orton, and Makenzi Morrison along with Kristine Fuller who hails from Clearwater, Fla., come in this year ready to play.

Beginning their college careers as Cougars are freshmen Cassie Broadhead, a 5-foot-9 guard from Glenville, N. Y., who prepped at Scotia Glenville High School and Savannah Irwin, a 6-foot-5 center from Carlsbad, Calif., and La Costa Canyon High School.

Cougar fans will have on opportunity to see all of the players in the two exhibition games.

The 2013-14 season officially gets under way on Friday, Nov. 8 when the team hosts first time opponent South Dakota State. Tipoff is set for 3 p.m.