Oklahoma State women's basketball coaches killed in plane crash

Friday, November 18, 2011 | 11:43 a.m. CST; updated 1:28 p.m. CST, Friday, November 18, 2011

STILLWATER, Okla. — Oklahoma State women's basketball coach Kurt Budke and assistant coach Miranda Serna were killed in plane crash Thursday night in Perry County, Ark., the university said in a statement.

The small plane crashed around 7 p.m. There were no survivors. The two others killed, including the pilot, were not affiliated with the university. The coaches were on a recruiting trip.

"Kurt was an exemplary leader and a man of character who had a profound impact on his student-athletes," OSU President Burns Hargis said in the statement. "He was an outstanding coach and a wonderful person. We send our deepest sympathies to his wife, Shelley, and their children, Sara, Alex and Brett.

Budke, 50, was in his seventh season as head coach. 

Serna was also in her seventh year as an assistant at OSU. 

"Miranda was an up-and-coming coach and an outstanding role model for our young ladies," Hargis said.

The plane crash happened 10 months after the 10 year anniversary of a plane crash that killed 10 members of a travel party of the OSU men's basketball team.

The Tulsa World spoke with Eddie Sutton, who was the men's head basketball coach at the time of the 2001 plane crash.

Mike Holder, OSU vice president of athletics, said Jim Littell, associate head coach, will serve as interim head coach. The university announced the Cowgirls will not play games scheduled Saturday and Sunday against Grambling State (La.) and Texas-Arlington. 

The Missouri women's basketball team is scheduled to play Oklahoma State on Jan. 21 at Mizzou Arena and March 3 in Stillwater, Okla.

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