Goose Creek sprinter Tyshonda Hawkins has big plans this weekend.
She plans to compete in the South Carolina High School League Class AAAA state qualifying track meet on Saturday at Spring Valley High, and should be in the hunt for victories in the 100-, 200- and 400-meter dashes.
Her performance could pay dividends early next week when she is expected to announce her college decision. South Carolina, Clemson and East Carolina are some of the schools interested in having the senior standout join their teams.
But not so long ago, her future didn't seem so bright.
During her sophomore year, the two-sport star tore her ACL playing basketball, which in turn wiped out her track and field season.
"At one point, I was slightly afraid that I would return, and I wouldn't be as strong as I once was," Hawkins said. "I didn't know what the future held."
Her road to recovery wasn't easy. It took stamina and courage to return, and Hawkins was willing to do the work, shake off the pain and doubt.
She returned to the basketball court during her junior year and helped the Gators reach the Class AAAA Lower State title game.
She followed up that success with a fifth-place finish in the 200 dash and a silver medal in the 400 dash at last year's state track and field championships.
She saved the best for her senior season.
As a member of the basketball team, she helped the Gators post a 27-1 record and win the first state championship in school history.
Now, she's been on track for a return trip to Columbia. She has the fastest times in the Lowcountry in the three sprint events.
She's posted a 12.55 in the 100, a 25.45 in the 200 and a 59.55 in the 400.
Sharonda Singleton, who coaches the Goose Creek girls team, says Hawkins can lower her time in the 400 by nearly six seconds over the next two weeks.
"The 400 is what she's concentrating on," Singleton said. "She's looking to do well in the 100 and 200, but her best chance is in the 400. I wouldn't say she's peaked just yet. She got off to a late start this season because her basketball season carried over because of the state championship.
"When I look at Tyshonda, I see someone who can really show improvement the next couple of weeks."
Hawkins said being a member of the state championship basketball team was a confidence booster.
"I was a winner, a state champion on the basketball court, and now it's time to win a state championship on the track," Hawkins said. "Winning the state championship in basketball is like an extra boost of adrenaline."
Hawkins says her work ethic is stronger this season, she's more lean and has a higher endurance level.
"I've worked hard in practice," she said. "I'm going to drop my times and I'm looking to win. The results will be what I deserve. The results will be a product of hard work."