The Coastal Carolina men's basketball team spent 21 hours on the team bus returning from Lexington, Virginia battling the winter storm that crippled the Carolinas. On Wednesday night, Coastal Carolina scored a come from behind 83-78 win over VMI in Lexington. Snow started falling hours before the 7pm tipoff. The CCU basketball team normally drives through the night on a Wednesday night road trip, but made the safe decision to stay overnight with a foot of snow already on the ground.
The Chanticleers departed at 8am on Thursday morning and made it to I-74, just south of Mt. Airy, North Carolina when they came to a complete standstill. The team would spend the next twelve hours stranded on that highway. The team spent a good portion of that time with no heat. It was feared that the bus was broken down, but was able to get cranked back up and get rolling shortly before 1:00am. Early on, the players enjoyed themselves passing the time with a snowball fight and building a snowman.
While Coastal Carolina was stranded on I-74, I never made it to the North Carolina border. I departed my hotel in Lexington at around 10:30 am and could only get as far as Roanoke before I was blinded by snow. After being stranded at a gas station for nearly three hours, it took me 90 minutes to travel six miles to my hotel where cars were buried under a reported 20 inches of total snowfall.
As the night wore on, the players vented their frustration on Twitter.Uros Ljeskovic @ ljesko13 If this bus turns off one more time or we get stuck I'm walking back to myrtle. Period. ????? Badou diagne @ TheGreatBadou23 Been on the road since 8.30am, stuck in the same spot for 5hours! #snowstorm CCU Chanticleers @ GoCCUsports The Men's Basketball team arrived back in Conway at 5 am. Thanks to all the well wishers throughout the 21 hour trip. the 12th commandment @ Michel_Enanga Never been so happy to be at Conway...#tripFromHell #struggle
Coastal stands at 8-3 in Big South play, leading the South Division and has the challenge of turning around on little rest to face Gardner-Webb, who played on Tuesday night ahead of the storm. The Runnin' Bulldogs are unbeaten on the road in league play. Tip off is set for 7:00 pm at the HTC Center on Saturday night.
WPDE Sports is your home for the Cliff Ellis Show. This Sunday at noon, we'll look back on the Gardner-Webb and VMI games as well as the players talking about their nightmare road trip.