Teen Volleyball Player Dies, 3 Families Injured in 'Tragic' Crash While Traveling to Texas Tournament

"They just met up with some black ice that they just didn't see," said Venom Volleyball Club coach Jimmy Gonzalez

One athlete is dead and several others are injured after a group of parents and teen volleyball players were involved in a crash while traveling to a tournament in Texas last week.

At the time of the crash on Thursday, three Venom Volleyball Club families were making the drive from Goodyear, Arizona, to Austin for the Lone Star National Qualifier, the volleyball team shared in a statement on Friday evening.

Coach and club founder Jimmy Gonzalez told KTVK that the families had originally planned to fly to Texas, but switched travel plans after their flights were canceled due to weather conditions. While making the drive, the group's SUV lost control after hitting black ice and crashed head-on into a semi-truck, he told the outlet.

"With overwhelming pain in our hearts one of our athletes has sadly passed away," Venom Volleyball Club wrote. "Two other athletes are in critical condition but stable and one former alumni traveling with them was severely injured but in stable condition."

Venom Volleyball Tragedy Relief Fund
Venom Volleyball Team. Gofundme

Additionally, one of the parents involved in the crash was "hospitalized and in stable condition," while the other two parents, who sustained minor injuries, had been discharged.

A moment of silence was held at the event for the late athlete as well "as the players and mothers that were severely injured," according to a post from the Arizona Storm Elite Volleyball Club. Gonzalez has also organized a GoFundMe campaign to help support the families.

Venom Volleyball Club
Venom Volleyball Club. Venom Volleyball Club Facebook

Based on their preliminary investigation, the Texas Department of Public Safety said that five of the seven passengers in the SUV were ejected from the vehicle, according to a news release obtained by PEOPLE. Those ejected were not wearing seatbelts.

Although authorities have not identified the victims of the crash, saying only that the girl who died was 17 years old, a separate GoFundMe was created on behalf of her family, identifying her as the daughter of a beloved local nurse.

"Sadly, last week his wife and daughter and their club volleyball team were involved in a tragic car accident in Texas due to severe weather conditions," organizers wrote. "With overwhelming pain in our hearts, his daughter passed away and his wife is in critical condition."

As of Monday morning, the GoFundMe campaign has raised over $32,000.

Venom Volleyball Club
Venom Volleyball Club. Venom Volleyball Club Facebook

The volleyball club's coach and founder said he learned about the crash after receiving a call from another coach.

"She was just crying, and so she handed one of the phones over to one of the moms that was there with her athlete and told me, 'Jimmy, there's been a tragic accident,' " Gonzalez said during an interview with KTVK.

"It's not a call that any director wants to receive," he remarked while speaking with Fox affiliate KSAZ-TV.

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Gonzalez told KTVK that at the time of the crash, the families said that "road conditions were still good."

"We would have forfeited if we thought any of our parents would have been in danger on the highways," he added. "The conditions, from my understanding, the conditions were good; they just met up with some black ice that they just didn't see."

In a message shared on the team's GoFundMe, Gonzalez says that in addition to prayers, they are asking for help covering expenses for the three families impacted by the tragic crash. As of Monday morning, the campaign has raised over $132,000.

"Your outpouring of support during a very difficult time for our club families has been tremendous," Gonzalez wrote in an update shared on Monday morning.

Although "related expenses and medical bills are mounting fast for all 3 families," Gonzalez added that "we remain hopeful."

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