LEXINGTON, KY (Lex 18) – As Pikeville High School battled for a state football championship in Lexington Friday afternoon, one part of the players’ uniforms symbolized the community’s pain and perseverance over the last year.
On each white helmet you could find a black sticker with a blue line and “Unit 111” on it.
The number was Pikeville Police Officer Scotty Hamilton’s unit and badge number. The Pike County native was shot and killed while
responding to a call in the Hurricane community in March.
“He was at our school every morning and it was a terrible loss for our community,”
said Taylor Spurlock, a student and fan at the game. “He was a really special person.”
For every win and loss this season, Pikeville High proudly wore number 111 sticker, never forgetting what it meant. It was only appropriate they wore it again Friday, in their biggest game of the year.
“The boys understand that and they know it every time they put that helmet on,” said Jason Booher, principal at Pikeville High school. “It’s just been really a sad time, but Scotty would really be proud of how the community has rallied around to acknowledge what a big part of this community he was.”
Down by one with two minutes to go, the Panthers drove downfield with a chance to win the game. Ultimately, an interception kept the trophy out of their hands.
“I think our kids fought like they should have wearing that 111 on the back of their helmets,” said Head Coach Chris McNamee.
Beechwood High School defeated Pikeville 21-20 for the Class 1a State Championship.