A Decatur-based basketball team was on the way to a tournament in Atlanta when their bus caught on fire. Everyone's okay, but the team did lose some essentials.
"When the last boy was getting off the bus, the last player getting off the bus, we started seeing flames," the team's head coach, Kashonna Strong, said.
Strong was driving the team to the tournament on Friday when she started to smell something and saw smoke. She told her players to run and leave everything behind.
"Next thing we know, it just started flaming and black smoke came immediately," Strong said.
Strong said she called 911 and Decatur Youth Services sent vans to pick them up. She said her players lost gaming systems, cell phones, shoes, basketballs and their new game jerseys.
"I had to stay calm for the boys. Deep down, I was nervous, but I didn't panic," Strong said.
Hours later, the team regrouped and got back on the road. They made it to the tournament and all three teams, based on age groups, placed.
"It was never a question. Basketball is what we love," a basketball player, Cameron Mitchell, said.
Strong said, in order for the team to get back to being tournament-ready, they may need the community's help.
"We're just trying to fund to get the jerseys, to reimburse for the jerseys, shoes, basketballs, basically just the things we need to play," Strong said.
No matter what happens next, Strong knows her team is mentally prepared after what they just went through.
"I teach my guys all the time that adversity is nothing, so you have to get through adversity," Strong said. "We faced adversity and we overcame it."
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