Tioga’s Demetric Payne returns from torn ACL; dominates against Jena
BALL, La. (KALB) - Sept. 27, 2019, is a day that Tioga’s Demetric Payne won’t forget. Against the Jena Giants, Payne tore his ACL. Instead of quitting, he took on the challenge of rehabbing.
“I had it written in my head that I would be back,” Payne said. “People were going to remember me in my last season.”
This would be Demetric’s second time tearing his ACL, and playing again seemed like a longshot.
“I remember having a talk with him in the offseason,” Tioga head coach Kevin Cook said. “I told him if you think football is not for you, I wouldn’t blame you one bit. He was like ‘no coach I’m playing’.”
Demetric put his head down and worked. He came out on the other side of an injury with one goal.
“No one really knows me,” Payne said. “So by the end of my senior year, you’re going to know me.”
He made his presence felt in last week’s game against Jena—the same team he tore his ACL against one year ago. He rushed for 149 yards and scored three touchdowns.
“That whole week was revenge week for me,” Payne said. “I had to get it. They had to remember me. Last time I played them, they remember number six tearing his ACL. Now they’ll remember me for rushing for more than 100 yards and scoring three touchdowns on them.”
“He’s overcome so much,” Cook said. “I thought he came out Friday night and maybe played the best game we’ve gotten to see him play.”
Not to mention, he did it in one of the muddiest games this season. You could say he got it out of the mud, and he’s not done yet.
“We’re going to make something happen. We’re going to be special. With the grace of God, we’re going to go big. I believe that 100%.”
For his performance, he’s this week’s ACA Athlete of the Week.
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