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Pregnant lacrosse coach at Seton Hill killed in bus crash

March 16, 2013|By Paloma Esquivel
  • Rescue workers remove a tarp after a bus crash on the Pennsylvania Turnpike. Lacrosse players from Seton Hill University in Greensburg, Pa., were among 23 people aboard. A coach and the bus driver were killed.
Rescue workers remove a tarp after a bus crash on the Pennsylvania Turnpike.… (Joe Hermitt / Patriot-News…)

The Seton Hill University community in Greensburg, Pa., was in mourning Saturday after a bus carrying the women’s lacrosse team crashed, killing a pregnant coach and the bus driver.

The team was on its way to an afternoon match at a school about three and a half hours away when the bus went off the road and slammed into a tree.

The bus driver, Anthony M. Guaetta, 61, was pronounced dead at the scene. Coach Kristina Quigley, 30, was airlifted to a hospital where she was pronounced dead. She was about six months pregnant, officials said.

“The Seton Hill community is mourning the loss of Kristina Quigley and her unborn son,” university spokeswoman Kary Coleman said in a written statement.  “The university extends deepest sympathy to Quigley’s husband and family.”

The bus was traveling along the Pennsylvania Turnpike in central Pennsylvania when it veered to the right, went over a guardrail and traveled across a grassy area before crashing into the tree, said Bill Capone, a spokesman for the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission.

Seton Hill is a small Catholic university in Greensburg, east of Pittsburgh. According to its website, the women’s lacrosse team was scheduled for a 1 p.m. match at Millersville University near Lancaster. 

Twenty-seven people, including the driver, were on the bus when the crash happened shortly before 9 a.m.

Two other passengers were also airlifted to a hospital, Capone said. Capone said he did not have any reports of serious injuries among the passengers who were not airlifted, although many were taken to nearby hospitals as a precaution.

Quigley, a Baltimore native, was married and had a young son. She had just begun her second season with Seton Hill's women’s lacrosse program, Coleman said. In her first season, she led the team to 11 victories. She had been a coach at Erskine College in Due West, S.C., and an assistant coach at her alma mater, Duquesne University in Pittsburgh. 

The cause of the crash is still unknown. No other vehicles were involved and the bus was traveling on a straight stretch of the turnpike when the crash occurred, Capone said. Pennsylvania State Police are investigating.

School officials were planning a memorial Mass for Sunday evening at a chapel on campus. 

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paloma.esquivel@latimes.com

 

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