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High school football: Edmond Memorial takes wild ride to Enid

The Bulldogs' trip to Enid took a strange turn Friday night. Edmond Memorial had to switch buses twice after one bus suffered a cracked windshield and a second bus' windshield came loose because of the wind.
BY ED GODFREY Staff Writer egodfrey@opubco.com Published: September 8, 2012
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photo - Edmond Memorial's Warren Wand is chased down by Edmond North's Joel Dixon during the high school football game between Edmond North and Edmond Memorial at Wantland Stadium in Edmond, Okla., Friday, Aug. 31, 2012. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman
Edmond Memorial's Warren Wand is chased down by Edmond North's Joel Dixon during the high school football game between Edmond North and Edmond Memorial at Wantland Stadium in Edmond, Okla., Friday, Aug. 31, 2012. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman

It was a wild Friday night for the Edmond Memorial football team in Enid and on the way to Enid.

The Bulldogs had an adventurous bus ride on the way to play the Plainsmen. The Bulldogs had to switch buses twice, and the game was delayed for 20 minutes because of Edmond Memorial's late arrival.

Driving into the 40 mph wind gusts that brought a cold front into Oklahoma late Friday afternoon, the Edmond Memorial bus carrying the varsity team had to stop when its windshield was shattered near Perry on Interstate 35.

“Something hit the windshield and it just spider-webbed,” said Lucas Gerdes, a senior offensive tackle for the Bulldogs. “It just spread over the whole windshield. Glass pieces flew into the bus.”

Coach Justin Merideth said the bus driver, assistant coach Dan Pendergrass, had cuts on his face from the flying pieces of glass.

“He did just an unbelievable job of keeping his composure and getting off the road and keeping the kids safe,” Merideth said. “That is a scary, scary deal.”

Merideth and the team waited for the bus carrying the junior varsity to arrive. The two squads then changed buses, and the varsity traveled on to Enid while the junior varsity stayed on the side of the road and waited on another bus to arrive from Edmond.

However, the new bus carrying the varsity team couldn't make it to Enid either because of more windshield problems.

“Because of the wind, the windshield popped out of its socket,” Merideth said.

The driver had to pull the bus over on U.S. Highway 412.

“Water started pouring in on our bus driver,” Gerdes said.

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