Nine dead in crash involving college golf teams

Nine people are dead after a vehicle collision involving the University of the Southwest's men's and women's golf teams occurred in Texas. The teams were traveling to a golf tournament in Midland.

The collision occurred in Andrews County, where a pickup truck and a vehicle carrying members of the golf teams crashed into one another head on after the truck crossed into the vehicle’s lane, The Associated Press reported.

Sgt. Steven Blanco from the Texas Department of Public Safety said six students, a faculty member and two people in the pickup truck died in the collision, per the wire service.

Blanco also said two students were critically injured and flown to a Lubbock hospital. 

“It’s a very tragic scene,” Blanco said. “It’s very, very tragic.”

The University of the Southwest said in a post on Twitter Wednesday that it was still notifying family members of those in the crash and was providing counseling services to students and faculty. 

“We are still learning the details about the accident but we are devastated and deeply saddened to learn about the loss of our students’ lives and their coach,” University President Quint Thurman said in a statement, the AP reported.

The University of the Southwest is a private, Christian college located in Hobbs, New Mexico, near the state’s border with Texas.

Midland College, which hosted the golf tournament, said Wednesday’s play would be canceled because of the crash. Eleven schools are participating in the event.

“All of the players and their coaches from the participating schools met together early this morning,” Midland College athletic director Forrest Allen said in a statement Wednesday. “We were all shocked to learn of this tragedy, and our thoughts and prayers are with USW as they grieve this terrible loss.”

The National Transportation Safety Board will send a 12-member “go team” to the crash site, including experts in human performance, vehicle and motor carrier factors and accident reconstruction, agency spokesman Eric Weiss said. The team is expected to arrive late Wednesday afternoon or early evening, he said.

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