For much of the summer, Collins spent three of four hours a day at the gym.
“We had her ball-handling, doing strength training, she rehabbed with our trainers, she rehabbed with her doctors, she was jumping rope, running through cones and just really trying to strengthen that quad and hamstring,” Sears said. “She's so hungry. She had a mindset. She knew she was going to get back and be healthy.”
By the time the Eagles went to Arkansas for a team camp in July, Collins felt like she was back to 100 percent.
Any doubts she had about returning her gone.
She never worried about a recurrence of the injury.
“If it was going to go out, it was going to go out going hard,” Collins said. “I wasn't going to give any less.”
And that's the way she's played.
Collins is averaging 18 points and 4 assists, helping the Eagles fight through a tough schedule with plenty of 6A teams to reach the tournament with a record that's hovered around .500.
Collins will have a chance to play somewhere in college but hasn't decided where yet.
For now, she'll concentrate on being one of the players at this week's state tournament that will appreciate the opportunity the most.
“That injury was just so…,” Collins said, her voice trailing off. “I want to be in tears right now thinking about it.
“I'm just blessed to play basketball right now.”
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