Indiana News

Hammond basketball team back on court after crash

Friday, December 07, 2012

Members of a northwest Indiana high school basketball team were back at practice Thursday night for the first time since their van was involved in a crash last week.

There were certainly a lot of smiles and hugs in the gymnasium at City Baptist School as the school welcomed back its varsity players, the "Overcomers".

A lot of them are still very stunned about what happened to them last week, but rather engage in the blame game, they're far more interested in the message of the Thanksgiving holiday around which their accident happened.

"None of us should have survived that crash," injured student Luis Forte said. "I'm grateful for life. I'm grateful to be here with my family and my team and just grateful everybody is still ok.

Most severely injured was 18-year-old junior Brian Steps. After climbing out of the van as it perched in the embankment, it rolled on top of him. The hot muffler pressed against his back.

"They got it off my back just enough. I was asking 'was the team okay?' but I was just laying there," Steps said.

Each of the boys said a white vehicle tailgated their van that night and may have caused their driver and assistant coach Luis Uruchimai to lose control around the curve of the Indiana Toll Road exit at Cline Avenue

The Lake County sheriff has interviewed all of these boys and will only say their investigation continues.

But for these children of faith, the answer to why did this happen seems to be summed up neatly by senior power forward Joshua Nunn.

"God does things to get our attention and he wants us to understand that he is here and he is real for us and he's there for us. And sometimes he has to open up our eyes," Nunn said.

Fortunately there were no casualties but the team's uniforms. Many of the players were wearing their varsity uniforms which had to be cut off by emergency workers.

The team is trying to raise about $2,000 so they can get new uniforms for their team.

It is yet another hurdle that the City Baptist Overcomers are going to have to overcome.

(Copyright ©2014 WLS-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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