ARCHER HEIGHTS — When her son called her from the Dunbar High School basketball team bus Monday night, Sharon Spears immediately asked: "Did you win?"
But moments later, she heard six shots, and the phone went dead. She feared her son, a forward and shooting guard on the team, was dead. She only learned he was okay after she rushed to Provident Hospital, but an 18-year-old teammate was shot but was in good condition.
"I was terrified," Spears said Tuesday night, while watching Dunbar play Curie Metro High School in Archer Heights — a game which Dunbar lost 68-41.
The game was far less tension-filled than the game against Englewood High School the night before. After that game, at 7:50 p.m., the team bus was leaving the school near 62nd Street and Stewart Avenue when three or four black males fired shots into the bus, striking one player in the leg, police said. No other injuries were reported.
The suspects were flashing gang signs at the students before the shooting, sources said.
Team center Eric Ross, 18, said tensions were rising during Monday's game.
"We was fixin' to fight them during the game," Ross said Tuesday morning outside the school. He said he heard shots fired at the bus as they were driving away.
"We were in shock yesterday," Ross said. "It was crazy."
When her 16-year-old son told her about the violence, stay-at-home mom Priscilla Hunt said she felt "terrorized" and sympathetic to the victims. Her son, she said, "had a rough night of sleeping," but she knows things could have been worse.
"It could've been more tragic," she said. "I'm glad it wasn't. Jesus help them."
Fans at Tuesday's game said they came to show support for the team, although it's not the first time Dunbar kids have been shot while leaving a basketball game.
"I was hurt by what happened," said Brittany Ramsey, 17, whose boyfriend is on the team. "Why get mad at our team? It’s just a basketball game. This is my school. ... I'll always support my team.”
Spears said, she too, wanted to show her support for the team Tuesday. But she said she was more worried about having a stronger police presence at games.
"We need more guards to protect them,” she said.
A Chicago Public Schools spokesman said security was posted at the host school and an escort took the kids from the school to the bus.
"All the protocols at the school during and after the game were followed," the spokesman said.