Tag: winter storms

Duquesne men's NCAA college basketball coach Jim Ferry speaks to reporters during Atlantic 10 media day in New York, Tuesday, Oct. 20, 2015. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
AP Photo/Seth Wenig

Duquesne’s 30-hour bus ride finally comes to an end

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More than 30 hours after they began their trek from Fairfax, Virginia to Pittsburgh, the Duquesne men’s basketball program finally made it back to the Steel City.

This was a wild situation for Jim Ferry’s team, which beat George Mason in overtime Friday afternoon. With the game tipping off at 2:00 p.m. Eastern, the hope was that they’d be able to beat out Winter Storm Jonas and get back home before conditions got too nasty.

Unfortunately for Duquesne their bus was stuck on the Pennsylvania Turnpike some 80 miles away from home…and they didn’t move for 22 hours. The bus had plenty of gas so they were able to keep it running and heated, and managers made a food run Saturday afternoon. Eventually some players, coaches and support staff members were able to provide the final push needed to get the bus moving.

As one would expect, the travel party was thrilled with the fact that the bus was finally moving. The Duquesne Dukes were on their way home…at last.

30 hours and 24 minutes after the trip from Fairfax to Pittsburgh began, Duquesne was finally back on campus.

UPDATE: Southern Illinois headed to area hotel after heavy snow strands team bus on Interstate 57

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While Southern Illinois didn’t join the list of teams who have seen their schedules change this weekend due to the inclement weather hitting the northeast and midwest, the Salukis weren’t as fortunate when it came to their trek back to Carbondale, Ill. following their 66-48 loss at Illinois State.

Due to heavy snow the team bus was stranded on Interstate 57, and according to a report from Andy Katz of ESPN.com Sunday evening there was concern that the team would have to spend the night on the bus. However according to Todd Hefferman of the Carbondale (Ill.) Southern, there was a chance that would not be the case.

Towing is not allowed, according to the notice, although SIU is awaiting a tow truck. If one can not reach the bus, or be called because of the policy, [SIU assistant Anthony] Beane [Sr.] said the Illinois State Police has agreed to help the team reach its hotel in the Tuscola area.

The news got better for the Salukis later Sunday night, as according to the Daily Egyptian a tow truck finally showed up some five hours after the whole ordeal began. The company told the newspaper that their assignments were backed up nearly four hours due to the weather.

Beane was the lone coach on the bus with the players, with head coach Barry Hinson and assistants Terrance McGee and Tom Hankins leaving after the game to go recruiting. Hinson’s staying in his car overnight according to the report from the Daily Egyptian, while McGee and Hankins found a hotel room for the night. The team wasn’t quite as lucky. They ended up sleeping on the floor of a church in Tuscola, IL.

SIU athletic director Mario Moccia gave Katz the following description of the events that led to the bus being stranded:

Moccia said the driver pulled off the side of the road and hoped to get a window where he could continue driving. But when the highway cleared a bit the bus was stuck. Attempts were made to get a tow, but I-57 was closed.

SIU head manager Mark Morrissey tweeted a picture of the stranded bus.

With brutally cold temperatures expected in the area, it’s good to hear that the team is on its way to a hotel in Tuscola. According to the Daily Egyptian, the athletic department hopes to get the players back to Carbondale on Monday.