Chilliwack basketball star Deanna Tuchscherer ready for Hungarian adventure

The UFV women’s basketball standout is going overseas to play pro basketball

The first thing on Deanna Tuchscherer’s checklist as she settles in to her new basketball home?

Learn how to say the name of her new basketball home, Zalaegerszeg.

“It’s called Zahaladaburg,” she said with not a lot of certainty and a little laugh. “I’d better avoid saying that to locals as much as possible.”

Be patient Hungarians. She’s a smart person and she’ll get there.

The G.W. Graham grad and UFV Cascades star flew out Saturday, bound for Zalaegerszeg and her first pro hoops gig. The 19-year-old forward is joining NTE NKK in the Nemzeti Bajnokság I/A, the top women’s league in Hungary.

Talking on the phone late last week, the teenager was equal parts excited and nervous.

READ MORE: UFV stars Deanna Tuchscherer and Katie Lampen sidelined by pandemic

READ MORE: Thousands of athletes in limbo as universities grapple with COVID-19

“I don’t know too much (about Hungary), but I guess I’ll figure it out as I go,” Tuchscherer said. “I did some Googling and it definitely looks like an exciting place and I’ve heard it’s got pretty good basketball.

“I think I’m more excited than anything. There’s definitely going to be some challenges on the culture side of things. Szia is hi in Hungarian, so I do know one word.”

If it sounds like Tuchscherer hasn’t had a lot of time to think about this it’s because the idea of playing hoops in Europe is barely two weeks old.

“It was a pretty quick decision,” she said. “As soon as things started to shut down (due to COVID-19), I knew the season at UFV might not look the way it usually does. All of us (on the UFV women’s basketball team) have been figuring out how to make the most of this year, and when this opportunity was presented — talking to some of my teammates and coaches and my family, it seemed like the best way to develop as a player.”

Tuchscherer will be tested, playing against women who are several years older than her. She’s not been told what her role on the team will be, but she’s hopeful she’ll get lots of floor-time.

“My rookie year at UFV was good preparation for this because I played against women who were older and more experienced than I am,” she said. “I found it exciting getting out of of my comfort zone and being challenged to a different level, and I’m excited to see how I can use this to learn and get better.”

Off the court, the Chilliwackian is better equipped for this adventure than most would be, thanks to her international experience in the Team Canada program. She’s been to Europe before, representing her country in FIBA competition.

“Over the past three or four years, I’ve been to places like India and Belarus, and it definitely helps me now,” she said. “It won’t be my first time in a country where I don’t speak the same language, but basketball is the same wherever you go, so in that sense I think I’ll be okay.”

Tuchscherer will have a few items in her suitcase to help her ‘feel at home.’

“With technology these days, you can call or text someone whenever, so that’ll help me to stay connected,” she said. “As far as my suitcase, I’ll have a G.W. Graham shirt. I don’t know why, but everywhere I’ve traveled I’ve had a G.W. Graham shirt packed, so I’ll do that.”


@ProgressSports
eric.welsh@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

basketballUFV Cascades

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Peggy Ardnt (left) and Ed Ardnt (right) present the symbolic first poppy to Harrison Hot Springs Mayor Leo Facio. This presentation is traditional across Canada to share awareness of the poppy campaign leading up to Remembrance Day on Nov. 11. (Adam Louis/Observer)
Agassiz Legion presents first symbolic poppies

Local dignitaries accepted the poppies, continuing a long-standing tradition

Left to right: Sardis Kiwanis Club President Bruce Oakley with nominator Peter Somers, Sovereign’s Medal recipient Brian Cleaver, nominator Derek Fryer and nominator Peter Brown. (Submitted photo)
Chilliwack’s Brian Cleaver wins Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers

Cleaver is a long-time member of the Sardis Kiwanis Club and a strong advocate for Special Olympics

Former Chilliwack-Kent BC Liberal MLA Barry Penner, pictured here in 2016 when he was the outgoing chair of the ICBC board of directors, said the BC Liberals have a lot of work to recover from the Oct. 24, 2020 election defeat. (Black Press File)
BC VOTES 2020: Former Chilliwack-Kent MLA Barry Penner opines on BC Liberal future

‘There isn’t enough room on the political spectrum … for two free-enterprise parties’

New Chilliwack restaurant moving into supposedly haunted Nowell Street location

Many restaurants have come and gone, Twisted Thistle the most recent, at Nowell and Princess Ave

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates the COVID-19 situation, B.C. legislature, Oct. 26, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps by 287, another senior home outbreak

Two more deaths recorded, community outbreak in Okanagan

An untitled Emily Carr painting of Finlayson Point was donated to the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria by brothers Ian and Andrew Burchett. The painting had been in their family for several decades. (Courtesy of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria)
Never before seen painting by famed B.C. artist Emily Carr gifted to Victoria gallery

Painting among several donated to Art Gallery of Greater Victoria

The B.C. Centre for Disease control is telling people to keep an eye out for the poisonous death cap mushroom, which thrives in fall weather conditions. (Paul Kroeger/BCCDC)
Highly poisonous death cap mushroom discovered in Comox

This marks first discovery on Vancouver Island outside Greater Victoria area

100 Mile Conservation officer Joel Kline gingerly holds an injured but very much alive bald eagle after extracting him from a motorist’s minivan. (Photo submitted)
Rescued bald eagle that came to life in B.C. man’s car had lead poisoning

Bird is on medication and recovering in rehab centre

Janet Austin, lieutenant governor of B.C., was presented with the first poppy of the Royal Canadian Legion’s 2020 Poppy Campaign on Wednesday. (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)
PHOTOS: B.C. Lieutenant Governor receives first poppy to kick off 2020 campaign

Janet Austin ‘honour and a privileged’ to receive the poppy

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Stock photo
Pair’s lawsuit dismissed against Fraser Valley soccer association and churches

Judge in Abbotsford calls claims against 14 defendants ‘an abuse of the court’s process’

Premier-elect John Horgan and cabinet ministers are sworn in for the first time at Government House in Victoria, July 18, 2017. (Arnold Lim/Black Press)
Pandemic payments have to wait for B.C. vote count, swearing-in

Small businesses advised to apply even if they don’t qualify

Most Read