Tessa Beauchamp on the basketball court with the Holy Cross team. (File photo)

Purple-adorned players to remember Surrey basketball star at Tessa’s Tournament

Fleetwood’s Holy Cross and others school gyms will host 44 teams this weekend

Tessa Beauchamp’s love of the colour purple will make the gym at Holy Cross Regional High School look a little like a Prince concert this weekend.

The Fleetwood-area school’s fallen basketball star will be remembered during another Tessa’s Tournament, a two-day competition involving 44 senior, junior and Grade 8 girls teams from the Lower Mainland and other parts of B.C.

Holy Cross is the tourney hub on Friday and Saturday (Feb. 1-2), with games played at four other school gyms in Surrey and one in New Westminster.

“We have a record number of teams this year, and 65 games scheduled,” reported Steve Beauchamp, Tessa’s dad. “The tournament has evolved and just continues to grow, not only in reputation but in experience and what the tournament really stands for.”

The competition is organized by Tessa Beauchamp Foundation (tessabeauchamp.org), created in the wake of her death in 2012. At the age of 18, a rare type of cancer claimed the popular athlete, and each year the foundation works to give scholarships to deserving young girls and boys.

CLICK HERE to read Tessa’s Story, as seen on the foundation website.

This weekend’s tourney, the seventh, is an annual highlight for those who work to keep Tessa’s memory alive.

“It’s created a bit of a tradition, and I think players look forward it,” Beauchamp said.

“It’s a tough event to run,” he added, “because you are flooded with so many memories (of Tessa), but at the same time it brings… I don’t know if gratification is the word, but it’s a feeling about who Tessa was is being reflected in the tournament, and what players are doing in their communities. Something that has come out of a pretty tragic event is now there to help other students like her.”

Four scholarships, each worth $1,000, are given to Grade 12 girls during the tournament, and the foundation hands out another six scholarships at other events throughout the year.

Last July, Langley Thunder lacrosse fans helped raise money for the foundation during a special game that saw the Senior A players wear purple jerseys in honour of Tessa’s favourite colour. The uniforms were auctioned off, raising $1,640 for the organization’s work to provide scholarships.

At Tessa’s Tournament, purple is a common sight.

“There are T-shirts, and the girls wear purple things in their hair and ribbons, things like that,” Beauchamp explained.

“This year,” he added, “we’re asking the teams to bring lightly used athletic gear for donation to Ancop, and they’ll bring it all to the Philippines. That’s a unique twist to it this year. One tradition we have during every game is, both teams come together for a group photograph. That’s something done in the spirit of Tessa, who was as competitive as they come, and hated to lose and all that, but once the game was over, you couldn’t find a more gracious person.”

In another twist, Tessa’s Tournament isn’t as competitive as similar events, at least in the traditional sense.

“It’s a unique setup because it doesn’t create a tournament winner, it’s more about teams competing against others that are similarly ranked or have similar abilities,” Beauchamp explained. “It’s a set draw, you know who you’ll play, and there are no championship games.”

Tessa’s parents, Steve and Wendy, work to stage the tournament with the help of foundation board members and many other people, including their daughters, Amy and Rachel, and several teachers at Holy Cross, both current and former – among them, Tessa’s volleyball coach, Rachel Johnston. Amy coaches the school’s Grade 8 girls team, and Rachel, who plays basketball at Douglas College, will help organize the games played there.

“The outpouring of community involvement is really great, including help from past players and the Fleetwood community,” Beauchamp said. “With 65 games in two days, it’s amazing how it all comes together.”

Surrey-area schools represented at this weekend’s tournament are Holy Cross, Fleetwood Park, Fraser Heights, Panorama Ridge and Sullivan Heights. In addition to Holy Cross and Douglas College, games will be played at Surrey Christian Middle and Secondary schools, St. Matthews Elementary and Fleetwood Park Secondary.



tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Tom on Twitter

Just Posted

Surrey cops looking for Guildford groping suspect

Groping is alleged to have happened on Sept. 15, in the 10300-block of 152nd Street

Surrey Santa parade returns to Cloverdale Dec. 1

Popular parade starts at 5 p.m., Big Rigs for Kids rolls to City Hall Plaza after parade

One of two people dead at Whalley house believed to be a homicide victim, IHIT says

IHIT at house near 140th and 102A. Surrey RCMP say it’s not related to shooting near 146th and 83rd

White Rock RCMP launches ‘Safe Place’ for LGBTQ2S community

Police say window decal identifies allies for those seeking shelter from bullying, etc

Man injured in ‘targeted’ shooting crashes into fence in Surrey

Surrey RCMP say the man is expected to survive

Fashion Fridays: Holiday outfits on a budget

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Smudging in B.C. classroom did not affect Christian family’s faith, says school district lawyer

Lawyers make closing arguments in a Port Alberni case about the Indigenous cultural practice

Canadian Forces member charged with possessing magic mushrooms in Comox

Master Cpl. Joshua Alexander, with the 407 Maritime Patrol Squadron, facing two drug related charges

Most B.C. residents, including those hit by 2018 storms, not prepared for outages: report

Create an emergency kit, BC Hydro says, and report all outages or downed lines

Study finds microplastics in all remote Arctic beluga whales tested

Lead author Rhiannon Moore says she wasn’t expecting to see so many microplastics so far north

Services needed in B.C. for early-onset Alzheimer’s disease patients: doctor, advocates

More patients are being diagnosed with Alzheimer’s at an earlier age

Mission principal saves goat, praised as hero by kindergarten students

“Today I get to be the hero in their eyes, changing the world one stuck goat at a time”

65-million-year-old triceratops fossil arrives in Victoria

Dino Lab Inc. is excavating the fossilized remains of a Triceratops prosus

B.C. widow sues health authority after ‘untreatable’ superbug killed husband

New Public Agency Health report puts Canadian death toll at 5,400 in 2018

Most Read