Kentucky rivals Martin County High and Pike County Central High played in a regional basketball tournament earlier this month, Martin County’s band couldn’t make it because of a bus driver shortage. The Times Tribune reports that while waiting to perform for their team’s game later in the tournament, Pike Central’s band started playing for the Martin County team, who’s game was tied with the other team favored to win. “The energy just skyrocketed,” a Martin County basketball player recalls. “The crowd’s energy just really pushed us to the end.”
Martin County ended up winning that game in overtime and are headed to the state competition for the first time in nearly forty years. Pike's team was sadly defeated in the next game .At that tournament.
Jason Johnson Pike band director said “In that moment, my band started playing for them in this amazing, organic camaraderie that evolved out of the situation.
Martin County school officials reached out to him to thank the band for their support and then invited the Pike band to play with the Martin band at the finals in Rupp Arena. Jason can't wait to tell his kids that they're playing in the finals!
“It’s going to be a neat conversation about good sportsmanship,” said Johnson. “And how we are all Eastern Kentuckians and we all support each other.”