ROSEPINE — The Rosepine Eagles just simply found a way to win.

ROSEPINE — The Rosepine Eagles just simply found a way to win.

Behind three touchdowns from junior Cade Ledet, the Eagles broke an 11-game losing streak on Friday night in front of the hometown faithful at McKee-McCain Stadium, defeating the Merryville Panthers in double overtime, 28-20.

“I think this win is a testament to the kids and their character. This speaks volumes about their heart,” Rosepine head coach Danny Cain said. “Our kids battled all night long and they showed their discipline and fought back. I’m really, really pleased with our team.”

After a sluggish opening quarter by both teams, the Panthers were able to get on the board on the first play of the second period. Facing fourth-and-goal from the Rosepine 6, Zach Slayter found his way into the endzone for a 6-0 Merryville lead.

After the ensuing kickoff, Rosepine took over deep in its on territory. On the first play, Ledet fired a pass to the outside, where it was picked off by Seth Powell, who returned it eight yards for the touchdown.

Christian Callahan ran the ball in for two points, giving Merryville a 14-0 lead.

Neither team found the endzone for the remainder of the first half, sending the contest into the locker room at the break with Merryville comfortably ahead.

But Rosepine eventually answered.

The Eagles battled their way back into contention in the third quarter when Ledet scored on a 2-yard touchdown run, cutting the deficit to 14-6.

As the game moved into the fourth period, the Eagles continued to pound away with the running game at the Panther defense. Ledet scored again, this time from 16 yards out, allowing Rosepine to close to within two, 14-12.

Ledet added the two-point conversion to tie the game at 14-14, sending the game into overtime.

Merryville, which had been shut out for the second half, found the endzone on its overtime possession as Powell scored on a 4-yard dive. However, the two-point conversion failed, leaving the score, 20-14.

On Rosepine’s overtime possession, Ledet was injured, forcing freshman Tanner Wiegand to take over temporarily at quarterback. On the next play, the Eagles had the snap go awry, but Wiegand tracked it down and scored on a 5-yard run, tying the game at 20-20, forcing a second overtime session.

Ledet returned to the field and scored on a 10-yard touchdown run, while also adding the two-point conversion, giving the Eagles a 28-20 lead as Merryville readied for its possession.

On the second play, the Panthers coughed up the ball and senior Lawrence Willis recovered for the Eagles, securing the win.

The Eagle defense limited Merryville to 262 yards of total offense and forced five turnovers, all fumble recoveries. Offensively, the Eagles netted just 225 yards as they were stymied by 132 yards in penalties.

But that didn’t stop Cain from being proud of his team.

“It was a battle from the get-go and Merryville took it to us,” Cain said. “But we proved we could battle back and we proved we are capable of winning. We took a major step forward tonight as we learn how to win.”

Ledet ran the ball 24 times for 80 yards and a touchdown, while completing 7-of-15 passes for 69 yards and an interception. Covey Landen added 66 yards on 21 carries for the Eagles.

Powell rushed for 99 yards and a touchdown for the Panthers, while also passing for 61 yards. Callahan added 47 yards rushing, with Slayter contributing 39 yards and a score.

The Eagles take to the road Thursday night for a matchup against Vinton, while Merryville is on the road Friday night against Westminster.