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Mr. Intensity

Mike Sciacca

If you didn’t know what jersey number Marshall Paymard wears for

the Laguna Beach High football team, there really wouldn’t be any

need: he’s the one wearing his intensity on his sleeve.

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Paymard, a senior, primarily plays defensive back but sees some

action at tight end and fullback in goal-line situations. He doesn’t

like to talk much about his numbers, nor that he’s one of the leaders

on a Breakers’ squad that is 3-1 heading into Saturday’s game against

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Magnolia.

He does his talking on the field. Not through speech, mind you,

but in the way he plays.

“He’s really intense out there and always wanting to do his best,”

Laguna Beach coach Dave Holland said of Paymard. “He strives to give

his all and he seems to always be in a game. I can’t remember a time

when Marshall has taken a play off.”

Paymard is one of several two-way players on Laguna Beach’s rather

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modest, 32-player roster. What he does on the field is what makes the

18 year old standout.

“I hope that I bring leadership and an intense attitude to this

team,” Paymard said. “We’re having a great season so far and there

are a few reasons for that.

“First, our coaches are doing a really great job with us this

year. We are a really disciplined and close-knit team. There are a

bunch of key players -- not just one player -- who make up this team.

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Our success so far has been due to a complete team effort.”

The 2002 season marks the third year that Paymard has been a

varsity starter.

His playing roots go back to Pop Warner Football where he enjoyed

playing at linebacker.

Like his teammates, his training regiment in preparation for his

final season included hitting the weight room hard and practicing

on-the-field running and conditioning.

It has paid off, too.

Heading into the fifth week of the season, Paymard has recorded a

team-best 30 solo tackles, assisted on 15 others, has had six of his

tackles result in negative yardage, caused one fumble, recovered one

fumble, intercepted a pass, and has one big hit.

“We honor players on defense with what we call, ‘extra efforts,’

and Marshall has done that,” Holland said. “An extra effort is when a

player goes beyond the call of duty, and Marshall is relentless to

the ball.”

If Paymard keeps going at his current pace, he’s likely to end up

with all-Pacific Coast League honors for a third consecutive year.

But that’s not what’s important to the 6-foot-1, 215-pounder.

“My main goal is to help lead this team to the CIF playoffs,” he

declared. “This school has not been there for a long, long time. We

have league coming up, and how we perform there will determine our

fate.”

Laguna Beach got off to a 3-0 start this season -- and beat Costa

Mesa for the first time in 12 years in the process, but will be

looking to atone for last week’s loss to El Segundo when the Breakers

take on Magnolia Saturday at Glover Stadium in Anaheim.

“We’ve already put the El Segundo game behind us and are looking

forward to Magnolia,” Paymard said. “We have turned that loss into a

learning experience. That’s a good sign with our team. Now we have to

go after Magnolia with a positive attitude and a lot of intensity. We

need to let our play do the talking.”

Just like Marshall Paymard does.

Oh, yeah: Paymard wears jersey No. 84.

* MIKE SCIACCA covers sports for the Laguna Beach Coastline

Pilot. He can be reached at 494-4321 or by e-mail at

michael.sciacca@latimes.com.


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