A high school basketball game was interrupted by gunfire Monday evening, sending players and fans ducking for cover.
The gunfire rang out just after 5:30 p.m. at Gauchos Gym off Gerard Avenue in the Bronx, during a New York Lightning invitational tournament. At the time, Putnam Science and Our Saviour Lutheran Prep schools were playing ball.
No one was hurt in the incident, according to the NYPD.
Putnam Science Academy said in a statement on Tuesday morning that the school psychologist met with several players and coaches this morning and college counselors are available as always.
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Law enforcement sources tell NBC New York they are searching for two male suspects in their 20s. The incident started out as an argument between the two men and it escalated into violence, the sources said.
One of the men pulled out a gun and fired at least seven shots into the air.
"Out of nowhere, I heard this one shot, and then nobody moved until the second or third shot... and then I see this guy in all black with a gun and he's moving in the middle of the court and he's firing into the crowd of people on the bleachers," witness Channelle Osorio said.
At the time, the gym was packed with players from several teams attending for the tournament, including families and even college scouts. Witnesses say everyone was sent running for their lives or diving for cover when the shots started.
"All I know is I was sitting in the bleachers watching the game and all of a sudden I just heard shots, a number of shots, sounded like they were right in the building so I hit the deck of the bleachers and laid myself out flat... There were a couple guys lying over me and we were just kind of waiting for the shooting to stop," a witness who just wanted to be known as Kenn said.
Osorio said after the shooting, people ran for the doors, pouring out of the gym, trampling some people. "My sister is traumatized right now with an experience like this, it was really terrible ."
Neighbors say the shots spilled out onto the street, with one bullet hitting a nearby SUV.
"As soon as I checked by the window I saw people running ...falling, screaming... little kids... I told my niece to get the phone and call 911," neighbor Taifour Diakhabi said.
The New York Gauchos is a renowned nonprofit youth organization and one of the most successful after-school basketball programs in the country. It has seen the growth of talented basketball players who would eventually play in the NBA and WNBA.