With football coursing through his blood, 2022 RB/SS Payne Plaster of White River High School (Buckley, WA) is an athlete carrying on the family tradition all while excelling at the game. Born and raised in Buckley, Plaster takes pride in suiting up for the hometown Hornets and even earned the designation of team captain as a sophomore, a title often held by seniors.
In 2019, Plaster (5' 9", 170 pounds) played on both sides of the ball, showcasing his enormous talent and knowledge of the game. Playing both running back and strong safety, he accumulated over 640 yards on the ground (5.7 yards/carry) with 5 touchdowns. On the flip-side, Payne shined with 59 tackles (26 solo), 1 sack, and 3 blocked punts all returned for touchdowns.
Despite the 3-6 record from a season ago, 2019 was a year of transition and one plagued by team injuries. Though difficult at times, Plaster and the Hornets continually overcame these obstacles with defining victories and hard-fought battles. By adapting week-in-and-week-out, he put his status as captain to good use by keeping the team focused and playing with pride.
With the 2020 season looming in the not-too-distant future, the league is set to undergo change once again as powerhouse Steilacoom High School enters the fray. Plaster and the Hornets are prepared for what lies ahead, but with the group of players set to return, confidence is building.
"We have a good group of players returning, tough kids that all have each other's backs which, I think, will be what sets us apart from other teams. We find a way to make plays and makes things happen."
And big plays are what Plaster is hoping to provide to a team that lost three games by less than six points a season ago. With aspirations of playing a bigger role in the offense come 2020, he hopes his offseason work of improving his speed and strength will translate to better game day outcomes while putting White River amongst the top of the division.
While his focus remains team-oriented, Plaster feels he has a future at the next level having received communication from coaches in Washington state and surrounding areas. Though that elusive first offer has yet to come, the work carries on and the ultimate goal of playing for Eastern Washington, on 'The Inferno', is set well within his sights.