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Bus carrying MSU men's lacrosse team goes up in flames

Posted at 5:36 PM, Apr 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-11 23:08:23-04

BILLINGS — The MSU men’s lacrosse team had quite a scare Sunday evening when a fire erupted on their bus as they were headed back to Bozeman after a weekend of games in North Dakota.

The team stopped for dinner in Billings and had just gotten back on I-90 when the team realized something was wrong.

“Some people in the back were like, hey, there’s a little smoke coming out of the bathroom,” said player Billy Diffley.

“We were flagged down by a fellow commuter just saying, indicating that there was something going on in the back,” said head coach, Chris Kelley.


The bus pulled over and everyone evacuated as Kelley went to check out the engine compartment.

“And there was a little flame there, not a ton, and he grabbed the fire extinguisher and he thought he pulled it out,” said Diffley.

The flames, however, kept coming back. “Just kept reigniting and not sure if those flames kind of just started something up top,” Kelley said.

Kelley quickly got off the bus and moments later, it was engulfed in flames.

Meadow Herman lives right next to I-90 and was returning home after grocery shopping when she saw what was going on. “We could feel the heat from the flames when we got out of the car,” Herman said.

She hit record on her cellphone as they pulled in front of their house. “I saw this black plume of smoke,” Herman said.

Fortunately, everyone on the team made it out safely. It’s still not clear what sparked the fire.


“We got most of our lacrosse gear off the bus,” Diffley said.

However, not every item made it out. “We didn’t get any of our computers, schoolwork, any of that sort,” Diffley said.

“Car keys, you know I think there’s one or two kids that couldn’t jump in their own car last night to go home,” Kelley said.

Though the team has suffered a loss, they’re gearing up for next weekend’s game. “The world doesn’t stop, we got to keep going, we got a game next Saturday,” Diffley said.

The lacrosse team has set up a GoFundMe to help students who lost computers and personal items; click here if you would like to donate.


Bus carrying MSU men's lacrosse team goes up in flames