Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com
ONEONTA – A moose on the loose?
En route to a weekend of games in Potsdam, the SUNY Oneonta Red Dragons women’s soccer team struck an animal – reported to be a moose by witnesses – on the I-89, the Northway, near North Hudson, at Mile Marker 114.
The SUNY girls were on a weekend swing to play SUNY Potsdam and SUNY Plattsburgh. They lost at Potsdam, but won at Plattsburgh.
“I cannot confirm it was a moose, but the bus did hit an animal and there was fairly significant damage to the front of the bus,” said Kim Macleod, the college’s associate director of communications. “The animal went off into the woods.”
The team’s coach, Liz McGrail, didn’t return phone messages.
Paul Patterson, the driver and city’s retired OPT director, also declined to comment, citing company protocol. The bus company that provided the team’s transportation was Hale Transportation out of Clinton.
No one was injured in the crash, and state police Troop B, Ray Brook, responded. Though troopers went into the woods to try and locate the animal, they were unsuccessful.
“The officers followed them as they drove down the road and switched the bus,” said Macleod. “And the best part was, they won the game!”
For decades, moose were a rarity in the Adirondacks, but began migrating back from Canada in the 1980s.
Today, there are an estimated 400 moose in the Adirndacks, and have been spotted as far south as the Capitol District and Columbia County.