Three teenagers were killed after a crash with a charter bus and car on SH-71 early Sunday morning. The charter bus was full of Huston-Tillotson students, and in the car were three girls from Round Rock.
Officials with the school confirmed on their Facebook page Sunday it was their baseball team that was on the charter bus, and they were traveling back to Austin from New Mexico when the bus was involved in the crash.
Dorian Jones was one of the players on the bus, ”I was toward the front of the bus, so I saw the impact happen, and I saw the glass shatter on the windshield. They came out onto the road in front of the driver. He tried stopping and swerving a little bit, he couldn't avoid it and the car got hit broadside on the driver side,” he said.
The Department of Public Safety said the crash happened just after midnight near the intersection SH-71 and Fall Creek Road in Spicewood, along the Travis-Blanco County Line.
“After the shock wore off, we all told each other we have to get off the bus, we need to go check on the car.”
Jones said many of the players went to help, but it was too late.
The three teens died at the scene, they have been identified as 18-year-old June Marie Smith, 17-year-old Isabella Torres and 17-year-old Taylor Nicole Mendez, all from Round Rock.
Smith who was driving a Chevy Cobalt with Torres and Mendez was turning left off Fall Creek Road, when DPS said she failed to yield to the charter bus. The bus was heading eastbound on Highway-71 when the two collided. Witnesses also told troopers they didn't see any lights on the cobalt at the time of the crash.
Jones said he's grateful none of the players or coaching staff on the bus were injured, but had a message for those grieving for the loss of the three young girls.
“We're so sorry that something like this happened. Obviously it's no one’s fault it's just a terrible thing to happen. The entire team is keeping them in their prayers,” he said.
The driver of the charter bus was taken to the hospital as a precaution.
DPS is leading the investigation which they said is ongoing.