RUSK - After beating the Pittsburg Pirates last Friday. The Rusk Eagles have made it past the first round of the playoffs, and for Coach Jowell Hancock that win was a team effort.

"We executed for the most part they had some times when they moved the ball and we'd come up with a turnover then when we got the turnover we looked to score so our skill kids really thrived."

After moving on in the playoffs many of the seniors have been waiting patiently to take that next step. A step they've dreamed of taking.

"It means a lot because the other two years on varsity my sophomore year on varsity we were 2-8 and we didn't have a shot and last year we were 4-7 we lost in the first round that was really tough so it means a lot to be here in the second round," explains lineman Jace Rogers.

"It's just been a way better experience from to last year going 4-7 to this year with the same coaches second year the coaches the senior leadership is great and we've just all have good chemistry this year it's been way better," says lineman Travis Pepin.

The end goal for most teams is to come away with a ring and a championship title, but for the Rusk Eagles the only way get that is by having a survive and advance mentality.

"When they see us they think of the past Rusk teams that we've taken the underdog role in every game pretty much this season it's just awesome to show people they were wrong and we were right," explains Pepin.

"We've taught that hard work does pay off we always talk about it's not where you are it's where you finish, these kids have learned to keep pushing and when you keep pushing good things happen," says Hancock.

As the end nears for the seniors on the team. According to Rogers, finishing their high school careers as an eagle is what it's all about.

"I remember when I was growing up and I was in 4th and 5th grade and the varsity football team would come to the school and they'd give us high fives and they'd sign their name for their autograph it means a lot because I always wanted to grow up and be an eagle."